Even though I haven’t had much interaction with the world of science, it hasn’t ceased to fascinate me. I think it is amazing how logic and creativity go hand In hand in pure sciences. Physics is my favourite discipline of science. I had feared that because of not being in touch with the subject for about three years, I might have forgotten most of it. It was an occasion of special delight when I found a series of 6 free eBooks explaining the entire basic concept on which Physics is built: motion. I mean, I have always had a sort of love-hate relationship with mechanics, so it would be helpful if there is a book that can help me overcome my issues with it. The books did really live up to their promise. The writing style is engaging, to say the least. The interactive examples and challenges make it even more fun. You don’t feel like you are reading a textbook. And the icing on the cake: they are all free! At first I had a metaphorical frown on my face. I was thinking, “Hmm.. okay, so what’s the catch?” But surprisingly, there was none! The author (who is a physicist based in Germany) is giving the books away as part of his project, termed Motion Mountain. The mission of this project is to bring the knowledge of Physics to the masses. I found this very interesting and was curious to know more about the author, Dr Christoph Schiller. It was very impressive, what he was trying to accomplish and I wanted to be able to contribute to it in some way, so I decided to interview him, and he accepted the request. So, my friends, let me present to you, Dr Christoph Schiller!
(And if anyone is interested in the books or in contributing to the project, please visit http://www.motionmountain.net)
Q: How did you become interested in physics?
Dr. Schiller: I am curious.
Q: What is the inspiration behind this mission to bring physics to the masses?
Dr. Schiller: University studies are free of charge in Germany, Italy, Belgium and many other European countries. I wanted to give back to others some of what I learned for free at the university.
Q: What do you hope to achieve through your free eBooks?
Dr. Schiller: All books are written to entertain the reader. So are mine. Also, I wanted to write up all I knew in a structured way.
Q: What do you consider your reward?
Dr. Schiller: Nothing.
Q: Do you think there is a decline of interest in learning pure sciences? If so, why?
Dr. Schiller: No.
Q: What is your advice to make learning natural sciences, especially physics, engaging instead of intimidating?
Dr. Schiller: Science is engaging when it is linked as tightly as possible to curiosity.
Another aspect to remember: what one person did, everybody can do as well; nothing in the world is too difficult to learn;
anybody can learn and understand anything he or she wants to learn.