### Post by Cynicus Rex on Oct 20, 2018 8:25:49 GMT

Late bloomers, underdogs, from zero to hero.

Who were underdogs in scientific, academic, or intellectual fields? Do you know stories, articles, or quotes with the undertone that it's never too late to study—particularly STEM fields—and nothing reasonable is impossible?

After reading I was pretty convinced almost anything is possible. Below is a screenshot of the web archive; unfortunately the original is offline: i.imgur.com/jkPmf29.png

If Susan Can Learn Physics, So Can You: www.susanjfowler.com/blog/2016/8/26/from-the-fledgling-physicist-archives-if-susan-can-learn-physics-so-can-you

Since the original is down as well, I again took the liberty of taking a screenshot for safekeeping: i.imgur.com/2OlhGSe.png

On surviving and thriving with a limited working memory: eideneurolearningblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/confessions-of-limited-working-memory.html

Alex Garland is a late bloomer in science: eu.usatoday.com/story/life/movies/2015/04/07/alex-garland-ex-machina/25372679/

What was your most empowering experience or decision? www.quora.com/What-was-your-most-empowering-experience-or-decision/answer/Jessica-Su?srid=X9I6

Bad memory can be a good thing: sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2016/07/14/clickbait-bad-memory-a-good-thing/

How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math (Sorry, education reformers, it’s still memorization and repetition we need): nautil.us/issue/17/big-bangs/how-i-rewired-my-brain-to-become-fluent-in-math

"I used to suck at math. Like really, really, suck": sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/physicist-i-used-to-suck-at-math-like-really-really-suck/

Major in the field you’re weakest in: sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2017/07/29/conquer-your-weakness-conquer-the-world/

I Went From Bad Student To NASA Astronaut’: Scott Kelly: www.inquisitr.com/4818197/i-went-from-bad-student-to-nasa-astronaut-scott-kelly/

A Path Less Taken to the Peak of the Math World: www.quantamagazine.org/a-path-less-taken-to-the-peak-of-the-math-world-20170627/

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Copy-pasted from: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Late_bloomer#Mathematics

Who were underdogs in scientific, academic, or intellectual fields? Do you know stories, articles, or quotes with the undertone that it's never too late to study—particularly STEM fields—and nothing reasonable is impossible?

**Tony Darnell**- Astronomer- How I overcame my math blocks: deepastronomy.com/article/how-i-overcame-my-math-blocks
- Want to study astronomy but can't do the math? web.archive.org/web/20160520103501/http://blog.deepastronomy.com/2011/11/want-to-study-astronomy-but-cant-do.html

After reading I was pretty convinced almost anything is possible. Below is a screenshot of the web archive; unfortunately the original is offline: i.imgur.com/jkPmf29.png

"He eventually told me that my brain simply wasn’t wired to do math. I would probably never be able to do it, he admitted sadly."

**Susan Fowler**If Susan Can Learn Physics, So Can You: www.susanjfowler.com/blog/2016/8/26/from-the-fledgling-physicist-archives-if-susan-can-learn-physics-so-can-you

Since the original is down as well, I again took the liberty of taking a screenshot for safekeeping: i.imgur.com/2OlhGSe.png

“So here I am, studying for finals, and I’m actually angry. Really, truly angry. Because there are so many people out there, like me, who were told at some point that they weren’t a math person, people who never had the opportunity to learn math or physics, and they are missing out on so much.”

**Dr Fernette**On surviving and thriving with a limited working memory: eideneurolearningblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/confessions-of-limited-working-memory.html

“I only accidentally discovered how bad my auditory working memory was when we were playing a memory game with our kids. To my surprise, I had the worst memory span in our family.”

**Alex Garland**Alex Garland is a late bloomer in science: eu.usatoday.com/story/life/movies/2015/04/07/alex-garland-ex-machina/25372679/

"When it was time for standardized testing at age 16, he didn’t take exams for physics, biology or chemistry, “because the school said, ‘There’s really no point in you sitting them."

**Jessica Su**What was your most empowering experience or decision? www.quora.com/What-was-your-most-empowering-experience-or-decision/answer/Jessica-Su?srid=X9I6

“When I was eight, I took a geometry class, and I did pretty badly because I was used to memorizing formulas, and didn’t know how to solve problems I’d never seen before. I was hopeless at proofs, and my teacher said I lacked the ability to think."

**Barbara Oakley**Bad memory can be a good thing: sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2016/07/14/clickbait-bad-memory-a-good-thing/

How I Rewired My Brain to Become Fluent in Math (Sorry, education reformers, it’s still memorization and repetition we need): nautil.us/issue/17/big-bangs/how-i-rewired-my-brain-to-become-fluent-in-math

“I fell off the math bandwagon and flunked my way through elementary, middle, and high school math and science. Now I’m a professor of engineering.”

**CoagulationZed**- Physicist"I used to suck at math. Like really, really, suck": sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/physicist-i-used-to-suck-at-math-like-really-really-suck/

“Well, I can speak to my own experience here. I used to suck at math. Like really, really, suck. I took the bare minimum in high school and never had a strong intuition for mathematical problem solving."

**Frances Perkins**Major in the field you’re weakest in: sciencerecruit.wordpress.com/2017/07/29/conquer-your-weakness-conquer-the-world/

"Perkins was interested in history and literature, and she floundered badly in chemistry. Nonetheless, her chemistry teacher, Nellie Goldthwaite, hounded her into majoring in chemistry. The idea was that if she was tough enough to major in her weakest subject, she’d be tough enough to handle whatever life threw at her."

**Scott Kelly - Astronaut**I Went From Bad Student To NASA Astronaut’: Scott Kelly: www.inquisitr.com/4818197/i-went-from-bad-student-to-nasa-astronaut-scott-kelly/

“A lot of people think [that] to be a scientist you have to be a genius – I am here to tell you that that is not the case.”

**June Huh - Mathematician**A Path Less Taken to the Peak of the Math World: www.quantamagazine.org/a-path-less-taken-to-the-peak-of-the-math-world-20170627/

"June Huh thought he had no talent for math until a chance meeting with a legendary mind. A decade later, his unorthodox approach to mathematical thinking has led to major breakthroughs."

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Copy-pasted from: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Late_bloomer#Mathematics

**George Green**working as a miller and with no formal education in mathematics, published his famous An Essay on the Application of Mathematical Analysis to the Theories of Electricity and Magnetism in 1828, at the age of 35.

**Alexandre-Théophile Vandermonde**started to study mathematics at 35, and began to publish in this field the same year.

**Eugène Ehrhart**started publishing in mathematics in his 40s, and finished his PhD thesis at the age of 60.

**Marjorie Rice**an amateur mathematician with no formal education in mathematics beyond high school, did not begin studying tessellations until December 1975; as she was born in 1923, this means she was either 51 or 52 when she began, depending on her birthday. She developed her own system of notation and used it to discover three new types of tessellating pentagons and over sixty distinct tessellations by pentagons by 1977.

**Caspar Wessel**published his only mathematics paper at the age of 54.

**Roger Apéry**proved Apéry's theorem at the age of 63.

**Yitang Zhang**a Chinese-born American mathematician, who established a theorem akin to the twin prime conjecture at the age of 58.