Monday (Dec. 11) marks what would have been the 135th birthday of Max Born, a German physicist and mathematician who was a key player in the development of quantum mechanics. Oh, and he was Olivia Newton-John‘s grandpa. The special day is being marked with the latest Google Doodle.
He’s best known for creating the Born Rule, which is a theory that uses probability to predict the location of a particle in a quantum system. The Born Rule is important for understanding and using quantum mechanics, which are the principles that govern physics at subatomic scales. We rely on quantum physics for all sorts of things, from precise timekeeping to better encryption.
Born won the 1954 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in quantum mechanics. In addition to his vital contributions to physical science, he also was the grandfather of the Australian singer and actress.
So next time you listen to the Grease soundtrack, make sure to thank Max Born for all his contributions to the world — including Sandy Olsson.