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Ernest Rutherford, 1st Baron Rutherford of Nelson OM, FRS (30 August 1871 – 19 October 1937) was a New Zealand-born British born physicist and chemist, renown for his work in particle physics and his strange desire to live in New Zealand. Rutherford successfully rigged the Nobel Prize on at least one occasion for his work on radioactivity, and was an inspiration for the atom bomb and possibly was the root of World War II as a whole.
He not only discovered radioactivity, which was later added to the particle physics text book. But he stole the textbook, ripped it up and re-wrote insisting his theories on atoms mainly being empty space were true. Of course nobody paid the slightest bit of notice.
edit Early life
Ernest was born to a pair of British farmers in Essex, however they quickly migrated "down under (no not Australia)". His father used this as a justification:
“to raise a little flax and a lot of children”
He however choose to ignore the effects New Zealand would have on his wife and children, claiming "it was for the best". However Ernest still grew like any other normal Kiwi child. He studied at a New Zealand school, went to New Zealand school, and only after that did some positive change come in his life. He was offered a scholarship in a proper British University, he seized this opportunity viewing it as a non-suspicious way of getting out of New Zealand. Permanently.
edit Role as a scientist
Upon graduating from University with tip top marks, Rutherford became professor of physics at McGill university, Montreal, Canada. It is unknown why he was in Canada, having lived already in England and New Zealand. But like a pack of ravenous wolves, the academics of the day followed the money trail and the chance to become "a big deal". Rutherford succeeded in both respects.
However 9 years later, the money trade winds pushed back to Great Britain where he became chair man of physics in the University of Manchester, England. He earned several honors with this role, oh and I guess his achievements played some sort of role. He discovered radioactivity and helped understand it, won the Nobel Prize in 1908 and was knighted in 1914 for "his services" to England and the Queen.
edit His "theories"
Rutherford had a profound interest in the atom, despite the fact no-one could see it and that it was somewhat useless to do so, Rutherford constructed his own atomic model. His model was seen as more advance than the 1830s models and rendered most text books prior to that as useless, as erasers and whiteout had yet to be invented.
Rutherford also enjoyed playing with Uranium and other radioactive substances for "peaceful" purposes and to gain a greater understanding on how the atom functions and why it does what it does. Rutherford discovered radioactivity thus adding more content to the already bulky university physics text book, for his own sick amusement.
edit Personal life
It is common knowledge that Ernest Rutherford was a scientist and a geek, thus most likely ruling him out of the relationship department, but he wasn't your average scientist. He was rich bastard and thus attracted all kinds of women to his doorstep. He like a true NERD declined all offers, preferring to live the life of seclusion and isolation that was typical of the era.
He also had a few sisters and brothers, although they lived in England and were getting on with having a real job.
Scientists from the university of Berkeley, California named element 104 over their beloved overlord. Of course they neglected to point out Rutherfordium's short half-life of a few seconds rendered it totally useless. They however later claimed "It was better than nothing, all the cool elements were taken!"
He was also buried with other physics cool kids such as Sir Isaac Newton and J. J. Thomson, after his strange and suspicious death of a very treatable condition in 1937. They also built him a kick arse statue, pictured on the right!