4 6 4 D O C U M E N T 5 4 0 M A Y 1 9 2 9 Meanwhile, I will naturally not try to induce you to make a decision in any man- ner that is unpleasant for you later, but I simply ask of you the following. At the next opportunity, in the colloquium or in the Academy, either you simply tell me “no,” or you give me a few lines for the corresponding introduction. I would then arrange everything else, and in particular, I would make sure that you would at the appropriate time have the opportunity to approve the publication of the En- glish edition.[3] The Academy as such has nothing other than a purely scientific interest in ar- ranging the publication of an English translation. With best regards, yours truly, M. Planck 540. From Norbert Wiener Cambridge, Massachusetts, 31 May 1929 Dear Professor, The enclosed article is in answer to your invitation to participate in the testing of your unified field theory. If it appears worthwhile to you, would you please be so kind as to submit it for publication in the Berlin Sitzungsberichten?[1] On one point, I must ask for your forgiveness. We have a newsletter for the Alumni Society of our technical college—the Technology Review. Its editors had invited me to publish something of a generally understandable nature on the current situation of the theory of relativity. I agreed, but was so disgusted by the nonsense from the Poors and the Sheldons that I devoted the major part of the article to refuting them. I also found an oppor- tunity to say a word about His Eminence, Cardinal O’Connell. He does not belong among the genuinely spiritual Princes of the Church rather, he is a rough-shod politician.[2] What I did that was incorrect was to mention something about your letter to us.[3] Certainly, I did that in the most polite form and most respectfully. But the gentlemen journalists took it literally, as if I wanted to refute your work, and as if I had boasted about that. Naturally, one is proud of being able to perform work that merits your applause, but as you will see from the enclosed pages, I didn’t overstep the boundaries of politeness. However, I seriously regret that I have contributed to the mass of nonsense about you that is continually appearing in American maga- zines and newspapers, even if coincidentally. A letter from the editors of the Technology Review is also enclosed. Best regards, your[4] Norbert Wiener
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