Science: A Theory As Good As Gold

Fueling debate on the source of petroleum

Like the White Queen in Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass, Cornell University Astronomer Thomas Gold has forged a distinguished career by believing six impossible things before breakfast. In the late 1940s, he, Astronomer Fred Hoyle and Mathematician Hermann Bondi roiled the cosmological community when they countered an early version of the big-bang theory of the universe with their steady state model, which stipulated the continual creation of matter (a concept now completely out of favor). In 1968 Gold was the first to propose that pulsars were rapidly rotating neutron stars (all evidence suggests he was right). In the mid-1960s he...

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