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Archives, History & Records Office

Hours: By appointment Monday-Friday during regular work hours.


Archives E-mail: slacarc[@]
RM E-mail: recordsmgt[@]
Phone: (650)926-3091
Post: SLAC Archives and History Office, M/S 82, 2575 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025.

Office Location: Bldg.50, Rm.122

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A story from From Shimon Yankielowicz:

In the fall of 1974 I finished my Ph.D. at the Weizmann Institute and came to SLAC as a young post-doctoral fellow. At the time, the book of Bjorken and Drell was THE modern book on Quantum Field Theory. It was the book from which all of my generation learned QFT. Clearly I studied it well and redid all the calculations carefully.

I thought I found somewhere in the calculation of some scattering amplitude a mistake by a factor that I no longer remember. When I came to SLAC and I was just starting to know Sid, I entered his office carrying the book. Sid was an idol for me and I was quite shy and uneasy.

"Look", I started, "I think, I believe, maybe ... there is one mistake of some factor in this formula in your book".

Sid looked at me with his bright eyes and good father-like smile on his face and responded:

"Say no more, I'll assume you are right and this is the only mistake in the book. How much did you pay for the book in Israel ?".

I was caught off guard and felt confused. I started to state,

" Well I'm not sure, I do not remember..."

Sid looked again with his good smile, took out a quarter coin, handed it to me and said:

"I think this will compensate you for buying defective goods, a book which carries one mistake. It's roughly the royalty I get for each book."

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Last Updated: 02/28/2017