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2005: Year of physics

In 1905, Albert Einstein submitted five papers for publication in Annalen der Physik, covering three topics: the photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, and the special theory of relativity. Although diverse in subject matter, these contributions are landmarks in their field - and testament to Einstein's genius. To honour their centenary, 2005 has been designated 'World Year of Physics'. Here, Nature news joins the celebrations.


How Einstein claimed his place in the changing landscape of physics during his annus mirabilis.

Commentary | | Nature

“I did not believe that it was possible to study the Brownian motion with such a precision.” From a letter from Albert Einstein to Jean Perrin (1909).

Concepts | | Nature

In his later years, Einstein sought a unified theory that would extend general relativity and provide an alternative to quantum theory. There is now talk of a ‘theory of everything’ (although Einstein himself never used the phrase). Fifty years after his death, how close are we to such a theory?

Endgame | | Nature

Related stories

To coincide with the centenary of Albert Einstein's ‘Miraculous Year’ — when he wrote articles that form the basis of the theories of relativity, quantum mechanics and brownian motion — 2005 has been declared World Year of Physics. Around the world physics as a university subject is in decline, despite its vital role in the development of the science and technology that underpins the modern world. Physicists, as outlined on http://www.wyp2005.org , plan to raise the political profile of physics as a subject, with the public and especially politicians. Nature's first contribution to the year is a profile of some of the rising generation of physicists.

News Feature | | Nature