Theodore H. Maiman

“Theodore H. Maiman recounts the pivotal moments in his life that led up to the invention of the laser in 1960 in these fascinating memoirs of a maverick. Maiman invented the laser. Maiman was successful due to his extensive knowledge of physics and engineering and his elegant and ingenious design, which no one else had anticipated. His pink ruby laser created the first coherent light ever seen by humans and has since provided game-changing technology for business, industry, telecommunications, the Internet, medicine, and the entire scientific community. Maiman also chronicles the opposition he faced from his employer as well as the ongoing intrigue from rival researchers working in industry and academia who were attempting to downplay his contribution to the invention of the first laser. This piece of writing is going to be interesting to a diverse group of readers, ranging from physicists and engineers to science fans and general readers. This volume contains a wealth of never-before-published photos and documentary materials relating to Maiman’s life and accomplishments ” “Maiman was not beaten to the laser by anyone. How significant is the laser in this? How significant are each of the lasers? That is the level of significance that we should accord to Maiman’s contribution. Both he and the laser had a profound impact on each and every one of our lives.” ” Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Physics at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, as well as the co-inventor of the transistor laser and the inventor of the light-emitting diode (LED), Dr. Nick Holonyak, Jr ” “After more than half a century, has passed, we can say with absolute certainty that Theodore Maiman’s revolutionary discovery altered the course of history. Without the laser, both our contemporary way of life and the pursuit of scientific knowledge would be very different. “Maiman had the stroke of genius needed to take a different approach [from his competitors].” — Dr. Ferenc Krausz, Director of the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics in Garching, Germany, and Professor of Physics at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany, and Pioneer in Attosecond Lasers and Attophysics “Maiman had the stroke of genius needed to take a different approach [from his competitors].” The intellectual achievement that is represented by his design is belied by the fact that it is so elegant and straightforward. Although his invention might seem like common sense to some people now, back in 1960, it was anything but common sense.” “Jeff Hecht, an author of numerous books on lasers and fiber optics, is regarded as one of the most knowledgeable science writers on the topic of the historical development of the laser.”