Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The First Scientist!

Abu Ali al-Hasan ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Haytham was the first person to test hypotheses with verifiable experiments, developing the scientific method more than 200 years before European scholars learned of it—by reading his books.

To test his hypothesis that "lights and colors do not blend in the air," for example, Ibn al-Haytham devised the world's first camera obscura, observed what happened when light rays intersected at its aperture, and recorded the results in what would become Kitab al Manazir (Book of Optics). Ibn al-Haytham conducted this and other experiments investigating the properties of light during a ten-year period when he was stripped of his possessions and imprisoned as a madman in Cairo.

How Ibn al-Haytham came to be in Egypt, why he was judged insane, and how his discoveries launched the scientific revolution are just some of the questions answered in Ibn al-Haytham: First Scientist, the world's first biography of the Muslim scholar known in the West as Alhazen, Alhacen, or Alhazeni.

Abdul Jabbar Al-Shammari, the director of the Ibn al-Haitham Center for Science and Technology in Amman, Jordan, writes: "I enjoyed reading about the events in the life of the famous scientist, Ibn al-Haitham. I congratulate you on writing a fantastic and accurate book.”
E. Salik of Los Angeles writes: "I recently read Steffens' book on Ibn al-Haytham. This is one of the best books I have ever read. His comments on historical data are commended."

1 comment:

Bradley said...

Thank you for mentioning my new book, Ibn al-Haytham: First Scientist. Written for young adults, it is the world's first full biography of the eleventh-century Muslim scholar known in the West as Alhazen or Alhacen.