Gene Meeks - In Memorium

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Kent Farnsworth: Re: Gene Meeks - In Memorium

Post by Paul_Schatzkin » Tue Dec 19, 2006 7:20 pm

Kent Farnsworth has written a nice eulogy to Gene Meeks.

Kent was there when Gene and Phil started setting up the first fusion lab in their house on State St. in Ft. Wayne, so it's a great first-hand account.

Also some more good photos.

Paul Schatzkin, aka "The Perfesser" – Founder and Host of
Author of The Boy Who Invented Television -
"Fusion is not 20 years in the future; it is 50 years in the past and we missed it."

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Re: Kent Farnsworth: Re: Gene Meeks - In Memorium

Post by DaveC » Wed Dec 20, 2006 1:06 am

Once again, many thanks Paul, for Kent Farnsworth's illuminating review of Gene Meeks' work and style.

It is all too common that one's education passes for knowledge and wisdom. Many times it is the "assistant" in the laboratory that makes the good ideas work.

It goes back more than a few years, but we should all remember that great experimentalist... Michael Faraday... who was entirely without formal education. Despite this, he became the leading experimentalist during much of the 19th century, and rose to be president of the Royal Society in England.

A person like Gene Meeks should be an encouragement to all to simply do their best with what they have. It will make a difference.

Dave Cooper

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Re: Gene Meeks - In Memorium

Post by MCL » Mon Dec 25, 2006 11:11 pm

Thank-you to Richard and the 'Perfesser' for posting this material.
It's sad to learn of the passing of a key pioneer like this. My
condolences to Gene Meek's family and friends. I have been well
impressed by the description of Mr. Meeks - his willingness to just
move on to the construction stage, while other team players are
engaged in discussions and coffee-drinking. It is so important
to move foreward while it is possible to do so. Time and time
again, the benefits of early prototype construction, and the value
that is gained from hands-on experience, are shown to exceed
any gains that come from waiting until the theory is nailed down.
And if you wait too long, you just run out of time.

I wish I could have met this fellow. To me, he was already a
legendary figure. I knew him only from the Hirsch-Meeks paper,
other published material, and this site.
Thanks, Richard, for letting others know about his passing.
- Mark Langdon