Download Einstein’s Brain

We all wish we could look into the mind of a genius - and now you quite literally can.

A new iPad app launched this week lets you look at 350 slides of Physics genius Albert Einstein's brain, which were scanned and digitised by the National Museum of Health and Medicine (NMHMC) in Chicago. Einstein was arguably the greatest physicist who ever lived, and was responsible for discovering General Relativity, the Photoelectric Effect (which laid the way for Quantum Mechanics), and a great many other scientific advancements.

Now it is hoped that students and teachers will use the app and gain inspiration from studying the images, with museum board member Jim Paglia saying that "he understood the value to research and science to study his brain, and we think we've addressed that in a respectful manner". The slides were originally taken during an autopsy performed by pathologist Thomas Harvey, where he “segmented the brain into approximately 170 parts, roughly grouped by the various lobes and brainstem, and then sectioned those parts into hundreds of microscope sections. These sections were mounted on microscope slides and stained to highlight both cellular structure and nerve conductive tissue”.

Harvey hoped that studying his brain would lead to discovering the origins of his genius, and the slides were donated to NMHMC in 2010.

It would be nice if that happened but, let's face it, you'll still be back playing Angry Birds before long.

Buy from the app store ($9.99)

Image: Rex