Michio Kaku

Michio Kaku is one of the mastermind co-founders of the string theory. You may have seen him on the television from shows such as: Larry King Live, Good Morning America, Nightline, and 60 Minutes. He has also been in many of The Universe episodes from the Discovery Channel and hosted the BBC channel show named Time. He currently hosts two live radio shows called Science Fantastic, and Explorations in Science which broadcasts weekly. He is the author of a number of books from Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps, and the Tenth Dimension, Visions: How Science Will Revolutionize the 21st Century and Beyond, Parallel Worlds, Einstein's Cosmos: How Albert Einstein's Vision Transformed Our Understanding of Space and Time and, Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration Into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel and has written many extensive papers on physics. ¹

Inspiration and Insight

Michio Kaku was born on January 24, 1947 in San Jose, California to two Japanese immigrant parents. Despite his

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mistreated Asian immigrant parents, he grew up a very patriotic American even when his people were rejected by society at times. Kaku first heard of Einstein at the age of eight and has been a fan ever since. Kaku notes Einstein as his biggest inspiration in what he does. In high school he went to the National Science Fair with a home-made atom smasher that he built in his parents’ garage. After high school, Michio was drafted into the U.S. Army as an infantryman to be sent over to the jungles of Vietnam, but lucky for him the war ended before he was shipped out from basic training. However, in boot camp he did a lot of deep thinking about the world and how everything in the Universe was. He struggled to find a real explanation and some say that that was where he received his real drive for astrology and astrophysics. From there he went to college and he received a Bachelor’s degree in Physics (summa cum laude) from Harvard University. In 1972 he received his Ph.D. from the University of California in Berkley. ²

Major Contributions

Michio Kaku is most famous for the co-founding of the String Theory, which tries to explain that everything is made up of these strings that are about the size of a Planck (10-35 m) that all vibrate at a resonant frequency of their own. He is also infamous for bringing advanced sciences down to a level where your average person could understand and learn with a kind and caring tone and charisma. This is probably why you see him on educational programs so often across many television stations. He can frequently be found talking and giving insight on subjects such as time travel, black holes, life in space, and parallel universes to name just a few. Some say that Dr. Kaku is trying to pick up where Albert Einstein left off in physics by explaining why things are the way they are throughout the Universe with his String Theory and his “hidden” equation that he has yet to find. ³

Affect and Effect

Michio Kaku’s parents were Japanese Americans during World War II. As a result they were held in the American concentration camps and treated like enemy aliens. After WWII though, his father was a gardener and his mother a maid. Needless to say he grew up poor and realized from an early age he would have to rely on himself for college so he always worked hard in school in all subjects. In high school he built a 2.3 million electron volt atom smasher which helped him get into Harvard. The atom smasher used a whopping 22 miles of copper wire, which had to be set up on his school’s football field and this helped him get recognized by Harvard University. Since then he has written many papers and books relating to string theory and whatever else catches his fancy. Some of these things include art, history, religion, politics, literature, and philosophy. Kaku is now a visiting professor at the University of New York, and Princeton, all the while pondering what the missing link is to his string theory. He believes the answer would be one simple equation that would be small enough to fit onto a t shirt but could answer everything man has ever wanted to know about the Universe.

The Things He Left Behind

Although Michio Kaku is still alive he has opened many new doors in the science world. He has also helped create the theory of multiple dimensions numbering in the double digits (usually ranging from 11 to 14). He has also made many other scientists realize that the answers to the universe could be easier to find than once thought, called the theory of everything, and that this answer could be a relatively small equation possibly rivaling that of Einstein’s famous equation E=mc2. He has also brought ideas that once were only science fiction into the minds of everyday people with the mindset that one day it will all be possible. He has also contributed heavily to the ideas that multiple universes exist even though we have yet to see any proof of them. Ultimately, however, he will always be remembered as one of the co-founders of the String Theory. Although many physicists agree with this theory there has been no substantial proof that this single theory is true and other similiar theories aren't true. The String Theory itself also branches into many sub-branches that can only answer properties for certain situations. It is still a long road until the String Theory will be complete but without Dr. Kaku, who is to say that we would even be looking at it at all in the epic quest of unravelling the Universe.


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