Albert Einstein, perhaps the greatest mind ever to have walked the face of the earth, was born on March 14, 1879 in Ulm, Germany. As a boy, he hated school, and felt that the regimented and repetitive nature of schooling in Germany at that time had any promise of helping his future. He did not do well in school, mainly because he did not care to learn what was being taught to him. While he seemed to be a bright child, his schoolwork did not interest him, but at the same time the simple compass that his father owned fascinated him. Albert constantly harassed his father and his Uncle Jake with questions concerning how the compass worked, and what caused it to work. The answers about gravitation and magnetism kept him up at nights as he attempted to obtain a better grasp of the meaning of these concepts. After hearing of his fascination with these scientific concepts, Max Talmey, a family friend, lent young Einstein books on mathematics and natural science. Upon reading these books, Albert was hooked. From that time on, he was constantly reading about science, geometry, and other areas of math.
Even with his newfound knowledge, school was still not interesting, and it was actually worse than it had been before. Now, along with his dislike of the teaching methods, his classmates disliked him for being somewhat of a loner, and because he was so much more intelligent than any of them. His lone passion outside of science was playing the violin, which he continued to do throughout his life. His love of the violin stemmed from his love of classical music, which his mother encouraged him to listen to. But because of his difficulties associating with his teachers and fellow students, he dropped out of school at the age of fifteen. Two years later, however, he was back in school at the Polytechnic Institute in Zurich, Switzerland, a place that would continue to have a profound effect on his life. Even this did not come easily for him. He failed the entrance exam, only to pass it on his second attempt. Finally, he was able to study his math and science in an atmosphere where a mind like his is usually welcomed. Once again, though, Einstein found himself resented. This time not by the students, but by his professors, and because of this, he was unable to obtain a teaching position at the Institute upon his graduation in 1900. The following year, he became a Swiss citizen, and he also wrote his
first scientific essay, which was entitled 'Consequences of Capillary Phenomena.' Einstein noted that this was proved the existence of molecules. In 1902, he married Mileva Maric, who had also attended the Polytechnic Institute. They had two sons, Hans Albert, born in 1904, and Edward, born in 1910, but the marriage itself ended with a divorce in 1919. Also in 1902, unable to find a teaching position, Albert was able to find a job in the Swiss patent office. Understandably, this doesn't seem like much of a job for such a great mind, but it may...