Paul Halpern via PBS Nova:
… Read the rest
Erwin Schrödinger loved animals.
That may come as a surprise to those who associate Schrödinger most closely with his cat paradox. Of all of Schrödinger’s accomplishments, including the Nobel-Prize-winning development of the quantum wave equation that bears his name, that hypothetical thought experiment, occupying just a few paragraphs in a single paper, is what sticks in the public memory. It has also earned Schrödinger an undeserved reputation for animal cruelty.
Yet his family knew better. As related by his daughter Ruth Braunizer, Schrödinger’s dog Burschie (“Laddie”) offered great comfort to the family throughout the dark days of World War II. No family scene was complete without their beloved collie.
Why would a lover of animals imagine something so cruel? For the same reason that, 80 years later, Schrödinger is still branded a cat-hater: preposterous analogies are memorable.