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万物简史(MP3+中英字幕) 第163期:爱因斯坦的宇宙(6)

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If you needed to illustrate the idea of nineteenth-century America as a land of opportunity, you could hardly improve on the life of Albert Michelson.
如果你需要说明19世纪的美国是个机会之乡的理念,那么你很难再找到像阿尔伯特·迈克尔逊这样的例子。
Born in 1852 on the German–Polish border to a family of poor Jewish merchants,
他1852年生于德国和波兰边境地区的一个贫苦的犹太商人家庭,
he came to the United States with his family as an infant and grew up in a mining camp in California’s gold rush country,
小时候随家人来到美国,在加利福尼亚州一个淘金热地区的矿工村里长大。
where his father ran a dry goods business.
他的父亲在那里做干货生意。
Too poor to pay for college, he traveled to Washington, D.C., and took to loitering by the front door of the White House
家里太穷,他上不起大学,便来到首都华盛顿,在白宫的正门口游来晃去,
so that he could fall in beside President Ulysses S. Grant when the President emerged for his daily constitutional.
希望能在尤利塞斯·S.格兰特每天出来散步时碰上这位总统。
(It was clearly a more innocent age.)
(那显然是个比较朴实的年代。)
In the course of these walks,
在这样散步的过程中,
Michelson so ingratiated himself to the President that Grant agreed to secure for him a free place at the U.S. Naval Academy.
迈克尔逊深深博得了总统的欢心,格兰特竟然答应免费送他去美国海军学院学习。
追逐你的梦想,终有成功那时It was there that Michelson learned his physics.
就是在那里,迈克尔逊攻读了物理学。
Ten years later, by now a professor at the Case School in Cleveland,
10年以后,迈克尔逊已经是克利夫兰凯斯学校的一名教授,
Michelson became interested in trying to measure something called the ether drift—a kind of head wind produced by moving objects as they plowed through space.
开始有兴趣测量一种名叫以太漂移的东西——运动物体穿越空间所产生的一种顶头风。
One of the predictions of Newtonian physics was that the speed of light as it pushed through the ether should vary with respect to an observer
牛顿物理学的预言之一是,在观察者看来,光在穿越以太过程中的速度是不一样的,
depending on whether the observer was moving toward the source of light or away from it, but no one had figured out a way to measure this.
取决于观察者是朝着还是逆着光源的方向移动。但谁也想不出对此进行测量的方法。
It occurred to Michelson that for half the year the Earth is traveling toward the Sun and for half the year it is moving away from it,
迈克尔逊突然想到,地球有半年时间是朝着太阳的方向运动,有半年时间是逆着太阳的方向运动的。
and he reasoned that if you took careful enough measurements at opposite seasons and compared light’s travel time between the two, you would have your answer.
他认为,只要在相对的季节里进行仔细测量,把两者之间光的运动速度进行比较,就能找到答案。
注:据考,文中“Ten years later...”音频中误读作“Two years later...”。
重点单词   查看全部解释    
innocent ['inəsnt]
想一想再看
adj. 清白的,无辜的,无害的,天真纯洁的,无知的
联想记忆
source [sɔ:s]
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n. 发源地,来源,原始资料
 
illustrate ['iləstreit]
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v. 举例说明,(为书)作插图,图解
联想记忆
measure ['meʒə]
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n. 措施,办法,量度,尺寸
v. 测量,量
联想记忆
drift [drift]
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vi. 漂流,漂移,漂泊,吹积,偏离
vt.
 
polish ['pɔliʃ]
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n. 光泽,上光剂,优雅,精良
v. 擦亮,磨
联想记忆
border ['bɔ:də]
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n. 边界,边境,边缘
vt. 与 ... 接
 
secure [si'kjuə]
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adj. 安全的,牢靠的,稳妥的
vt. 固定
联想记忆
constitutional [.kɔnsti'tju:ʃənl]
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adj. 宪法的,合乎宪法的,体质的,组成的 n. 散步
 
grant [grɑ:nt]
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n. 授予物,补助金; 同意,给予
n. 财产
 
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