How It Works

Video: Feynman explains magnets (1983)

Doctor Feynman was one of the defining physicists of our time. He is commonly said to have made complex physics accessible to all, and his lectures were later published in a series of books such as “Six Easy Pieces” and “Six Not So Easy Pieces“.

He was often referred to as the “Great Explainer”, leading the BBC to produce a short series with him known as “Fun To Imagine” on key scientific concepts in the early 80s, such as this video. In fact, his lectures at the California Institute of Technology were so renowned that fellow academics, teachers and professors would often sit in to refresh their memory on important physical concepts.

Sadly, Richard Feynman passed away on 15 February 1988, but his legacy still remains.




  • KeeperOfTheWord

    Not to dishonour a dead man, but this whole video, while showing obvious intelligence, insight and eloquent discussion, is basically a massively pedantic side-step on a genuine question.

    • Interesting point KeeperOfTheWord, but I think he’s more trying to illustrate that when answering a question such as this in just a few minutes, it’s often necessary for people listening to the answer to make assumptions about certain things. I think he makes a valid point, and if you watch some of the other videos from the series (http://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/feynman/) you’ll see that this isn’t his usual way of doing things. I just thought this particular video was quite interesting and amusing.