by Shazwan Zulkiffli

The world has been hit by the devastating news that renowned physicist Stephen Hawking just passed away at his family home in Cambridge. Despite being diagnosed to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the disease that gradually destroyed his ability to walk and speak, Hawking made numerous contributions to fields of cosmology and quantum gravity, becoming one of the most iconic scientists in history.

You may know Stephen Hawking for his work in science, but these are 5 things you may not know about the big man:

  1. Stephen Hawking was in your favorite TV shows

He may be popular for his contributions in science, but Stephen Hawking has also appeared in several iconic TV series like The Simpsons, Star Trek, and Big Bang Theory. The Theory of Everything was also written and produced about his life, starring award-winning actor Eddie Redmayne.

2. Stephen Hawking was a best-selling author

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Hawking’s baby A Brief History of Time: From The Big Bang To Black Holes is a masterpiece in cosmology. The book became a bestseller and sold more than 21 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 35 different languages.

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3. Stephen Hawking predicted the end of the world

According to Hawking, humans need to progress and find another planet in a 100 years – and he said this back in 2017. If we don’t manage to find a new homeland, humanity may be at risk of extinction by a gigantic fireball, artificial intelligence taking over, or, by the hands of humans are ourselves through climate change and nuclear war.

4. Stephen Hawking received mediocre grades in school

The man himself claimed that he couldn’t read until he was 8 and that during his tenure at Oxford, he was a lazy student. Although his classmates called him ‘Einstein’, he wasn’t the brightest of students in his earlier years.

5. Stephen Hawking believes in the possibility of aliens

If you’re not an avid follower, you may not know that Stephen Hawking has been open about the possibilities of extraterrestrial life. Hawking predicted that if there were aliens, they might use up their own planet’s natural resources and may be looking to colonize others, including our Mother Earth. Scary?