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Along with his work in theoretical physics, Feynman has been credited with pioneering the field of quantum computing and introducing the concept of nanotechnology. Tolman professorship in theoretical physics at the California Institute of Technology. and Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman by James Gleick.Feynman was a keen popularizer of physics through both books and lectures, including a 1959 talk on top-down nanotechnology called There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom, and the three-volume publication of his undergraduate lectures, The Feynman Lectures on Physics. Many years later, in a letter to Tina Levitan, declining a request for information for her book on Jewish Nobel Prize winners, he stated, "To select, for approbation the peculiar elements that come from some supposedly Jewish heredity is to open the door to all kinds of nonsense on racial theory", adding, "at thirteen I was not only converted to other religious views, but I also stopped believing that the Jewish people are in any way 'the chosen people'".In a 1999 poll of 130 leading physicists worldwide by the British journal Physics World he was ranked as one of the ten greatest physicists of all time.
The young Feynman was heavily influenced by his father, who encouraged him to ask questions to challenge orthodox thinking, and who was always ready to teach Feynman something new.When he was in grade school, he created a home burglar alarm system while his parents were out for the day running errands.Though separated by nine years, Joan and Richard were close, as they both shared a natural curiosity about the world.Wilson's team at Princeton was working on a device called an isotron, which would electromagnetically separate uranium-235 from uranium-238.This was done in a quite different manner from that used by the calutron that was under development by a team under Wilson's former mentor, Ernest O.