Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Simon Singh (born 1964) is a British author with a doctorate in physics, who has specialized in writing about mathematical and scientific topics in an accessible manner. He is the youngest of three brothers, his eldest brother being Tom Singh.
His written works include Fermat's Enigma: The Epic Quest to Solve the World's Greatest Mathematical Problem (about Fermat's Last Theorem), The Code Book (about cryptography and its history) and Big Bang (about Big Bang theory and the origins of the universe).
He has also produced documentaries and works for television which accompany his books.
His parents emigrated from the Punjab in India to Britain in 1950. He grew up in Wellington, Somerset and then went on to Imperial College London, where he studied Physics, before completing a PhD in particle physics at Cambridge University and at CERN, Geneva. In 1990 he joined the BBC's Science Department, where he was a producer and director in programmes such as Tomorrow's World and Horizon. In 1996, he directed Fermat's Last Theorem, a BAFTA award-winning documentary about the world's most notorious mathematical problem. The documentary was also aired in America as part of the NOVA series. The Proof, as it was re-titled, was nominated for an Emmy Award. The story of this notorious mathematical problem was also the subject of his first book, Fermat's Last Theorem. This was the first book about mathematics to become a No 1 bestseller in the UK. In 1997, he began working on his second book, The Code Book, a history of codes and codebreaking. As well as explaining the science of codes and describing the impact of cryptography on history, the book also contends that cryptography is more important today than ever before. The Code Book has resulted in a return to television for him. He presented The Science of Secrecy, a five part series for Channel 4. The stories in the series range from the cipher that sealed the fate of Mary Queen of Scots to the coded Zimmermann Telegram that changed to course of the First World War. Other programmes discuss how two great 19th century geniuses raced to decipher Egyptian hieroglyphs and how modern encryption can guarantee privacy on the Internet. Currently, he is involved more in television and radio programmes and has just published his third book, The Big Bang, a history of cosmology.
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