287 B.C. - 212 B.C.

Blaise Pascal

6/19/1623 - 8/19/1662

Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz

7/1/1646 - 11/4/1716

Thomas Bayes

1701 - 4/7/1761

Leonhard Euler

4/15/1707 - 2/18/1783

Pierre-Simon Laplace

3/23/1749 - 3/5/1827

Carl Friedrich Gauss

4/30/1777 - 2/23/1855

Henri Poincare

4/29/1854 - 7/17/1912

Believed in the power of intuition over logic as mathematical understanding (contrary to those as Russell). Bounced around off problems, discovered him through vector analysis (via his assessment of Stokes' Theorems' relation to calculus). Apparently he described relativity mathematically via Lorentz transformations before 1905 (ie "Ars Magna", when Einstein published his papers).

Bertrand Russell

05/18/1872 - 02/02/1970

Kurt Gödel

4/28/1906 - 1/14/1978

Tom Apostol

1923 - 2014


Rhind Mathematical Papyrus

1650 B.C.

A fantastic source of information on Egyptian mathematics. There is some contention in this date - Boyer says possibly more like 4000 B.C. Talks about 2/p fraction decomposition into unit fractions (didn't seem to grasp general fractions).

Library of Alexandria

284 B.C.

Alexandria, Egypt. It was destroyed between 48 B.C. and around 600 A.D. --- we aren't sure how exactly it was destroyed, but there are varying accounts during this time documenting it



First electric measuring instrument, a versorium (Latin for "turn around") was a crude electroscope.

Galileo's Mechanics


Newton's Principia Mathematica


Three books in Latin detailing Newton's laws and deriving Kepler's Laws, along with deriving infinitesimal calculus (apparently Newton and Leibniz had a bit of a battle in who invented calculus)? It was a landmark work that set the standard for science to come.

Coulomb's Law


The torsion balance experiment used to derive the inverse square relationship of force to distance between charges. This setup is much the same as that used to determine the force of gravity (though those forces were much weaker).

Decimal Metric System


Created in France at the time of the French Revolution. These were the precursors of the SI system

Young's double-slit experiment


Ohm's Law


Faraday Cage


Kirchoff's Laws


Maxwell's equations


Published in his paper "A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field"

Mendeleev's first periodic table


A Treatise of Electricity and Magnetism


Maxwell's multi-volume treatment of EM

CGS System


Introduced by the British Association for the Advancement of Science (BAAS) under leadership of Maxwell and Thomson. CGS was based on centimeter, gram, and second, with associated 103 prefixes.

Michelson Interferometer


MKS System


The "Metre Convention" in 1875 created the BIPM (the Bereau International des Poids et Measures, or in English, the International Bureau of Weights and Measures, which exists today to oversee the SI units). BIPM is in France. The MKS system was meters, kg, and second. BIPM exists under the authority of the General Conference on Weights and Measures (CGPM, Conference Generale des Poids et Mesures), which meets every 4 years to discuss the happenings of CIPM.

Also established from the Meter Convention was the CIPM (Committee for Weights and Measures), which consists of 18 individuals from different countries (this is starting to sound like the IETF structure).

Electron discovered


JJ Thompson Discovered the electron while working on cathode ray tubes and created the "Plum Pudding Model" for atoms.

Einstein's photoelectric effect


Einstein's special relativity


Einstein's E=mc^2


Robert Millikan Oil Drop Experiment


Determined the elementary charge.

von Laue x-ray diffraction


X-rays, produced first by Rontgen in 1895, were shined into a crystalline solid, producing a diffraction pattern, creating a method of mapping atomic structures. It also shed light on the x-ray wavelength.

Bohr atomic model


Compton scattering


De Broglie wavelengths


Schrodinger's Equation


Heisenberg principle


Van de Graaff Generator


MKSA System


With an added unit of electrical nature, the ampere (either the ampere or ohm would've worked, as shown by Gorgio in 1901), electrical units could be expressed as derived SI units, so the ampere was added.

MKSAKCm SI system


After the addition of Ampere to the SI base units in 1946 and the kelvin and candela in 1954, the mole was added in 1971, following discussions between chemists and physicists at the CGPM conference for weights and measures. This is the current form of our SI base units (meter, kilometer, second, ampere, candela, kelvin, mole).

Carl Sagan's "Cosmos"




384 b.c. - 322 b.c.

William Gilbert

05/24/1544 - 11/30/1603

An English physicist regarded as one of the "fathers" of electricity. He invented the electroscope (basically an electrostatic compass) and coined the term "electricus" from the Latin word for "like amber", from which "electricity" was derived.

Galileo Galilei

2/15/1564 - 1/8/1642

Isaac Newton

12/25/1642 - 3/20/1727

Benjamin Franklin

1706 - 1790

"Discovered" electricity, dubbed "positive" and "negative"

Charles Coulomb

1736 - 1806

In 1784 used that balancing experiment much like was used for gravity to determine the force between point charges. It was analogous to Newton's law of gravitation, where the force was inversely proportional to the distance squared and the charges.

Michael Faraday

09/22/1791 - 08/25/1867

English scientist, contributed to electromagnetism for Maxwell to run with (Faraday didn't have much of a math background). Discovered EM fields and realized they could affect light (thus were the same phenomena). Developed field lines.

Lord William Kelvin

06/26/1824 - 12/17/1907

James Clerk Maxwell

06/13/1831 - 11/05/1879

Oliver Heaviside

5/18/1850 - 2/3/1925

Applied complex numbers to a lot of areas of electrical engineering, formulated a version of modern vector analysis out of Maxwell's use of Quarternions.

Albert Einstein

3/14/1879 - 4/18/1955

Neils Bohr

10/7/1885 - 11/18/1962

Werner Heisenberg

12/5/1901 - 2/1/1976

Robert Oppenheimer

4/22/1904 - 2/18/1967

Richard Feynman

5/11/1918 - 2/15/1988

Carl Sagan

11/9/1934 - 12/20/1996

Stephen Hawking

1/8/1942 - 6/25/2013


Charles Babbage

12/26/1791 - 10/18/1871

John Von Neumann

12/28/1903 - 2/8/1957

Alan Turing

6/23/1912 - 6/7/1954


Paley's Natural Theology


Arguing for intelligent design based on the design argument.

Charles Darwin

02/12/1809 - 04/19/1882

On the Origin of Species



Samuel Morse

4/27/1791 - 4/2/1872

George Westinghouse

10/6/1846 - 5/12/1914

Thomas Alva Edison

2/11/1847 - 10/18/1931

Alexander Graham Bell

5/3/1847 - 8/2/1922

Nikola Tesla

1856 - 1943

Henry Ford

7/30/1863 - 4/7/1947


Steam engine governor


Developed for the steam engine by James Watt.