Quantum electrodynamics - or QED, for short - is the revolutionary theory that explains how light and electrons interact. Thanks to richard Feynman and his colleagues, who won the Nobel Prize for their ground-breaking work in this area, it is also one of the rare parts of physics that is known for sure, a theory that has stood the text of time. Based on a series of lectures delivered to the general public at the University of California, Feynman here wittily explains the theory of quantum electrodynamics, the central aspect of much of modern physics.
Richard P Feynman was one of this century's most brilliant theo-retical physicists and original thinkers. Born in Far Rockaway, New York, in 1918 he studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he graduated with a BS in 1939. He went on to Princeton and received his Ph.D. in 1942 During the war years he worked at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory. He became Professor of Theoretical Physics at Cornell University, where he worked with Hans Bethe. He all but rebuilt the theory of quantum electrodynamics and high-energy physics and it was for this work that he shared the Nobel Prize in 1965. Feynman was a visiting professor at the California Institute of Technology in 1950, where he later accepted a permanent faculty appointment, and became Richard Chace Tolman Professor of Theo-retical Physics in 1959. He had an extraordinary ability to communicate his science to audiences at all levels, and was a well--known and popular lecturer. Richard Feynman died in 1988 after a long illness. Freeman Dyson of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, called him `the most original mind of his generation', while in its obiturary The New York Times described him as `arguably the most brilliant, iconoclastic and influential of the postwar generation of theoretical physicists'. A number of collections and adaptations of his