Talk:Albert Einstein

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Former featured article Albert Einstein is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Good article Albert Einstein has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Main Page trophy This article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on February 12, 2005.

Including relevant quotes[edit]

The relevance of Einstein's friendship with Chaplin are in that the few paragraphs are descriptive of Einstein's life and personality. Direct quotes or paraphrased descriptions from those who knew Einstein personally have an obvious value. Hence, a question like, "Are these 2 guys best friends," is not a rationale for editing the article. Another, like "Do people care he was wearing black at some event," is a required detail to support the non-free image of that particular event.

For similar reasons, biographical details supported by quotes relevant to the sections, are obviously valuable. Einstein's article, before expanding with biographical details, included mostly science and technical facts, understandable to physicists, and very dry. I am restoring the paragraph which included relevant quotes to Einstein's biography, and again suggest that editors discuss before reverting, as noted in BRD. Previous rationales, such as more useless quotes - this article is about a person not about how Jews had problem, are personal opinions. --Light show (talk) 06:02, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

Good to see your at the talk page finally. Would love to find out why your not willing to follow BRD its a pretty simple concept - you boldly add something ..if it gets reverted join the ongoing talk about it. But thats anoither the matter at hand... its been explained before lots of quotes are not a good thing - we are not in grade 10 here. Can you explain why these quotes you keep adding are relevant? The argument being made for there removal is there useless quotes that at the very least should be summarized (as has been mentioned previous by many editors). This is not people magazine that we fill with personal POV's...its an encyclopaedia article about a very well know scientist. Would love to hear from others about these additions as I think the article is losing it authoritative voice. Had some input above voicing concerns for the accuracy of some of the edits and this has still not been addressed. -- Moxy (talk) 09:22, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
I agree with Moxy. Too many quotes spoil an article. We need to discuss and agree here before adding any more. --John (talk) 09:38, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
I agree that the quotes are not needed, and that these edits should be removed. This is not the place to record the horrors of that time. Johnuniq (talk) 10:11, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
At this point we have 5 editors with in 5 days all concerned with the recent changes. Over the next week we should fix all this up. I will try to do what i can and hope others can help-out as-well. -- Moxy (talk) 11:57, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
If you have a comment or question about a quote or two, try making them before wholesale deletions or edit-warring about entire paragraphs. Coming from a drive-by using a pseudo-rationale like "revert more useless quotes", does not improve the bio and adds nothing except a personal POV. Ignoring a BRD implies a preference for non-collaboration. And tracking an editor (ie. Kubrick), likewise adds nothing except another expression of "self-possessed confidence." However, I did appreciate your wonderful suggestion that one way of improving Einstein's bio might be to model it after "Adolf Hitler, a GA article of a person famous for their speaking ability that has very few quotes." --Light show (talk) 16:48, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
Good. It isn't hounding to let you know that your practice of adding many quotes is poor and unencyclopedic, on whichever article you do it. Please don't. --John (talk) 17:20, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
Note also that this so-called bio, when it was somehow considered GA quality, included mostly, about 85%, scientific details explaining his research with highly technical jargon. The Biography section was only 15%! Now it's the same sized article, but about 50% each of what could be two articles, his Biography and Scientific career. Isn't this a biography?
And who decided to skin his lead GA sentence? Originally, "Albert Einstein was a German-born Swiss-American theoretical physicist, philosopher and author who is widely regarded as one of the most influential and best known scientists and intellectuals of all time," and now merely "a German-born theoretical physicist." --Light show (talk) 17:30, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
There is 3 section about your edits and one archived section that is huge. Yet your still here adding quote after quote despite the concerns raised by many editors here and at Talk:Stanley Kubrick#Quotefarm. I am trying to prevent what happen at Kubrick happening here - dont want to loss GA status as many collaborated on that to get it to to that level. As John mentioned above would be best if you proposed here on the talk page anymore quotes you want to add before adding them. I think you would have more success helping Wikiquote's then Wikipedia.-- Moxy (talk) 17:37, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
I prefer to go by WP guidelines when using quotations in context with commentary:

Quotations are a fundamental attribute of Wikipedia. Quotations—often informally called 'quotes'—provide information directly; quoting a brief excerpt from an original source can sometimes explain things better and less controversially than trying to explain them in one's own words. . . . Provided each use of a quotation within an article is legitimate and justified there is no need for an arbitrary limit.

Therefore, if you have a problem with a particular quote or sentence, just copy-paste in Talk and explain first, instead of demolishing cited material without discussion. --Light show (talk) 18:23, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
BRD=bold, revert, discuss. You have the order wrong. If you are unwilling to follow BRD just say so. Sean.hoyland - talk 18:40, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
The editor could careless about what others are saying about the edits ..Heres another quote ..its simply not possible to work collaboratively like this - disruptive at best and Not here at worse. Not possible to keep up... we would need many different conversation about the many quotes added....this is not happening. Quote spammers are hard to deal with as they think they are doing a great job - its become a bigger and bigger problem. Also noticed we have some non-fair use images added recently..plenty of free images out there of this man. -- Moxy (talk) 07:28, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Your only contribution to this article is your repeated expression of quotiphobia. Similarly, that was your only involvement with other articles I worked on, simply to proclaim your fear of quotations. Nothing else. Try writing and adding to those articles, instead of stopping by to bash local editors. As stated before many times, just cut and paste a problem quote or sentence to talk, explain the issue and suggest an improvement, and it might even get done. Then you can say you actually helped edit the article, which would call for a celebration. Note that this article has over 1,800 watchers and hundreds of editors who wrote something. Those are called "local" editors, and they will certainly notice problems to an article they edited. They don't need drive-bys that keep harassing active local editors. There are another 31 million articles with 76 thousand other editors you can deal with. --Light show (talk) 07:54, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
All good talk. This is the article we are currently discussing. There are too many quotes and the Holocaust stuff is a distraction. Bluntly, these edits you are making are lowering the quality of the article. Do we need to go to a Good Article Review? --John (talk) 09:38, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Why did Einstein emigrate, and is that topic a mere distraction? --Light show (talk) 15:38, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps he emigrated because he got tired of DMY. - DVdm (talk) 16:03, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
BTW, if you'd like to know what real disruptive behavior looks like, an example is when a drive-by posts a pseudo-edit to a lead and changes it seconds later, simply to attack another editor. --Light show (talk) 14:54, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Face-plant! - Not the place for this but since you bring it up. Correct I noticed it was you that changed the image and decided I did not want to get involved in another edit war with you. The definition of disruptive behaviour is displayed by you in this article (not complying with BRD) and at your old user name copyright investigation (Wikipedia:Contributor copyright investigations/Wikiwatcher1) - you have wasted countless amount of our volunteers time cleaning up after you....its still ongoing ...with deleted image and quote summarizing. I agree that Wikipedia is a work in progress and edits can be fixed but sometimes its just to much. --Moxy (talk) 17:58, 10 June 2014 (UTC)

Uninvolved editor here. (I just came to check something about Einstein.) I prefer quotes. I don't trust every WP editor to paraphrase them correctly, or to include the important details. For example, the block quote from the NYT on Einstein's death includes the story about how Einstein's last words were lost because his night nurse didn't speak German. (I heard the story many times, but I didn't know it came from the NYT story.) BRD sounds like a formula for endless edit wars. --Nbauman (talk) 19:00, 17 July 2014 (UTC)

GA - yesterday and today[edit]

Back in March, 2010, when I looked at this GA/FA, I was surprised that it could be called a "biography." It was just 10% biographical details vs. 90% synopses of his scientific papers, each of which also had their own article. On the radical theory that he was a human being, I found a number of real biographies which discussed his life and activities, and was totally amazed to find out he did things, like walk and talk, just like real people, and currently the article is about 60% biography vs. 40% synopses. Moxy, who has yet to contribute to the bio, complains about too many quotations and too many pictures, which only make up a fraction of a percent of the biographical details. Does anyone else feel that the article, while not perfect, is currently more readable and biographical than before? BTW, the size of the article is the same now as it was then. --Light show (talk) 16:52, 20 June 2014 (UTC)

The article needs a good cleanup all around. As has been mentioned before way to many useless quotes and the sections are a getting unbalanced towards his USA activities and other peoples POV on Jews. The article is better then it was when it reached GA level years ago...but has recently went down hill. I would like to edit the article but ever time I have you revert. I even started talks on the matter, other agree with me, yet here we are still seeing more quotes added even before the other concerns raised have been addressed. I understand that adding quotes to articles is your thing ..but there have been concerns raised - specifically here. So what should be done here? I have decided to get a few others involved and help fix it up. We will be doing this at the start of next month. There is no rush...was hopping you would have paraphrase some of the quotes after so many have said its a problem.. but that is not really happing. -- Moxy (talk) 17:19, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
I am with Moxy here. The incessant quotes work against readability, as has been explained. --John (talk) 17:35, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
I have undertaken a program to remove quotes that are non-encyclopedic or simply not needed in this article. The quote situation has indeed gotten out of hand recently. A few edits should help restore the article to the fine status it enjoyed before such a disruption.Coldcreation (talk) 10:14, 4 August 2014 (UTC)
Thank you Coldcreation for the help. Was planing to fix this some time ago but other matters came up. Quotes like what he wore to some ball are just not needed. Its a hard read this article as over quotes interrupt the articles flow. -- Moxy (talk) 04:30, 5 August 2014 (UTC)


Where do we add the section about how he plagiarized everything from German scientists? It seems to have been well known at the time he was a plagiarist. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Themainman69 (talkcontribs) 08:53, 25 July 2014 (UTC)

Well, firstly he was a German scientist and secondly we don't because this is an encyclopedia based on reliable published sources rather than the Stormfront website. Sean.hoyland - talk 09:11, 25 July 2014 (UTC)
Also, if this is something that was well known it should not be very hard to find several reliable sources covering this.-- (talk) 19:19, 25 July 2014 (UTC)
The article does have a link to Relativity priority dispute under "See also", where there is discussion of claims that relativity is not wholly original to Einstein. Roger (talk) 20:02, 25 July 2014 (UTC)
That article is currently a mess, with structural problems such as wrong heading capitalization and asking questions in the headings...against WP:HEAD. And per WP:Fringe, it should perhaps present the Einstein matter as the prevailing view more than it does. Flyer22 (talk) 12:07, 23 August 2014 (UTC)

Excessive details in Academic career section[edit]

Some recent edits have added excessive details or trivia to his Academic career section. Shouldn't most of those details be put in the Scientific career section, if anywhere? The 1st paragraph includes, "This paper included Einstein's initial estimates of Avogadro constant as 2.2×1023 based on diffusion coefficients and viscosities of sugar solutions in water." The 3rd also has such details which should go elsewhere. --Light show (talk) 18:02, 23 August 2014 (UTC)

One obvious side-effect of adding those kinds of details, and even citing them with foreign-language sources, is that it disinvites new editors. For instance, the brief first paragraph of the section might have a misspelling or simple typo. To a new editor wanting to fix it, the edit page for that simple paragraph would look like this:

[[File:Albert Einstein (Nobel).png|thumb|upright|Einstein's official 1921 portrait after receiving the Nobel Prize in Physics]] In 1900, his paper [[List of scientific publications by Albert Einstein#Journal articles|"Folgerungen aus den Capillaritätserscheinungen"]] ("Conclusions from the Capillarity Phenomena") was published in the prestigious ''[[Annalen der Physik]]''.<ref>{{cite journal |last=Einstein |first=Albert |url= |journal=Annalen der Physik |title=Folgerungen aus den Capillaritatserscheinungen |trans_title=Conclusions from the Capillarity Phenomena |language=German |volume=309 |issue=3 |pages=513–523 |date=13 December 1900 |location=Zürich, Switzerland |format=PDF |doi=10.1002/andp.19013090306 |bibcode = 1901AnP...309..513E |accessdate=18 August 2014}}</ref><ref>{{cite book |last=Galison |first=Peter | authorlink=Peter Galison |title=Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Maps: Empires of Time |publisher=W.W. Norton |location=New York |year=2003 |isbn=0-393-02001-0}}</ref> On 30 April 1905, Einstein completed his thesis, with [[Alfred Kleiner]], Professor of Experimental Physics, serving as ''[[Wikt:pro forma|pro-forma]]'' advisor. Einstein was awarded a PhD by the [[University of Zürich]]. His dissertation was entitled "A New Determination of Molecular Dimensions."<ref>{{cite news |url= |title=Eine Neue Bestimmung der Moleküldimensione |trans_title=A New Determination of Molecular Dimensions |last=Einstein |first=Albert |location=Bern, Switzerland |publisher=Buckdruckerei K. J. Wyss |via=e-collection: ETH Institutional Repository, ETH Zürich, |series=e-collection |website= |year=1905/2008 |type=Doctoral and Habilitation Theses |format=PDF |language=German |doi=10.3929/ethz-a-000565688 |quote=Meinem Freunde Herr Dr. Marcel Grossman gewidmet (Dedicated to my friend, Dr. Marcel Grossmann) |accessdate=17 August 2014}}</ref><ref>{{cite book |last=Einstein |first=Albert |title=Investigations on the Theory of the Brownian Movement |publisher=Dover Publications |date=30 April 1905/January 1906/1956 |location=Berne, Switzerland |isbn=978-1-60796-285-4 |url= |accessdate=7 August 2013 |chapter=A New Determination of Molecular Dimensions}}</ref> This paper included Einstein's initial estimates of [[Avogadro constant]] as {{val|2.2|e=23}} based on diffusion coefficients and viscosities of sugar solutions in water.<ref>{{cite web |url='s_number#Estimates_from_liquid_solutions |title=Avogadro's number |accessdate=1 August 2013}}</ref> That same year, which has been called Einstein's ''[[annus mirabilis]]'' (miracle year), he published [[Annus Mirabilis papers|four groundbreaking papers]], on the photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, special relativity, and the equivalence of mass and energy, which were to bring him to the notice of the academic world.

There's something about that which contradicts the basic guidelines of what new Wikipedians can do: Anyone can be a Wikipedian—including you. Just click the edit link at the top of any page. . . . Good luck. Light show (talk) 18:48, 23 August 2014 (UTC)

Wording and sources[edit]

R3venans (talk · contribs), regarding this and this edit you made, why did you change the "Einstein also learned that his name was on a list of assassination targets," as though the material is dubious?

Regarding this edit, we should not remove sources simply because they are "unavailable." See WP:Dead link and WP:Paywall.

And regarding this edit, why remove that Einstein "actively supported racial tolerance"? I do see that it is somewhat redundant to that paragraph, though. Flyer22 (talk) 22:55, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

I can undo the "source unavailable" edit, unless you'd rather revert all of them. Aristophanes68 (talk) 23:05, 24 August 2014 (UTC)