Miscellaneous thoughts on physics research

Last year, according to the American Physical Society, there were over a hundred thousand articles published in physics journals

In 1933, at the age of 31, Paul Dirac received a Nobel Prize for his work five years earlier on relativistic quantum mechanics (which, amongst other things, suggested the existence of anti-matter).

In 1973, at the age of 33, Brian Josephson was awarded a Nobel Prize for his work on superconductors and notably the prediction,  eleven years earlier, of the ‘Josephson effect’ .

In 1995, at the age of 24, I completed my PhD after a three year undergraduate degree and then three years of PhD research.

Today, in New Zealand, getting a PhD before the age of 25, would be very rare. A usual track is three years undergraduate, two years masters, three or often four years PhD.

Is physics expanding at such a pace that in a hundred years people will need to spend up to the age of 30 in formal education before they can know enough background to do any meaningful research?

Will there ever come such a time that, in order know enough background to do meaningful research, a person will need to spend their entire life in formal education?

At this point, will all human development stop?

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