|Sir Harry Kroto|
|Born||Harold Walter Krotoschiner
7 October 1939
Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom
|Died||30 April 2016
Lewes, East Sussex, United Kingdom
Florida State University
|Alma mater||University of Sheffield|
|Thesis||The spectra of unstable molecules under high resolution (1964)|
|Children||David and Stephen|
Scientific discoveries matter much more when they're communicated simply and well – if you can't explain your work to the man in the pub, what's the point?
We live in a world economically, socially, and culturally dependent on science not only functioning well, but being wisely applied.
Imagine if we had stopped science in 1904. Yes, there would have been no nerve gas and no Bhopal, but there would also have been no penicillin. All science is a trade-off.
You've accepted a lot of things without evidence. Find out what the evidence is for that. Find out what the evidence is for everything that you accept.
You can be an idiot and survive because you just go to McDonalds for your food, and you go to work and do some sort of inane job, which is nobody taking any responsibility – it's always up the line – and then you watch the Super Bowl, and that's it. But in the old days, you really had to know how your world works. You don't need that anymore.
The laissez-faire attitude to science education has resulted in a disaster exemplified by the fact that more young people are opting for media studies than physics.
If doing something with second-rate effort satisfies you, find something else to do – where only your best effort will satisfy you personally.
Saying that we should stop nanoscience is tantamount to saying we should stop science.
Scientific education is by far the best training for all walks of life because it teaches us how to assess situations critically and react accordingly. It gives us an understanding based on reverence for life-enhancing technologies as well as for life itself.
Without evidence, anything goes. Think about it. Common sense says the sun goes round the Earth. Who agrees with me?
Science is based solely on doubt-based, disinterested examination of the natural and physical world. It is entirely independent of personal belief. There is a very important, fundamental concomitant – that is to accept absolutely nothing whatsoever, for which there is no evidence, as having any fundamental validity.
At no point do I ever remember taking religion very seriously or even feeling that the biblical stories were any different from fairy stories. Certainly, none of it made any sense. By comparison, the world in which I lived, though I might not always understand it in all aspects, always made a lot of sense.
Art and science are intrinsically the same except for one thing. The universe is in control of your science, whether it's right or wrong, and the public are in control of your art – if they're going to buy it, if you're going to make a living that way.
Many think of the sciences as merely a fund of knowledge. Journalists never ask scientists anything other than what the applications are of scientific breakthroughs. Interestingly, I doubt they ever ask a musician, writer, or actor the same question. I wonder why.
Having chosen something worth doing, never give up, and try not to let anyone down.
Human beings are just animals who will just eat and take advantage of any source of energy until it runs out, and then there'll be catastrophe.
It really does not matter whether one believes a mystical entity created the universe 5,000 or 10,000 million years ago – both are equally irrational, unsubstantiated claims of no fundamental validity.
I've always felt that the Nobel Prize gives me nothing as far as science is concerned.
I think the most important thing that young people should be taught at school is how they can decide what they're being told is true.