• Zachery Bernabe

Hawking thesis crashes Cambridge website


At 7:00 p.m. U.S. Eastern Time on Sunday, October 22, 2017, Cambridge University's website crashed due to the amount of viewers reading the freely published 1966 doctoral thesis "Properties of Expanding Universes," written by Professor Stephen Hawking. The influential thesis examines the origin and expansion of galaxies and the universe.

More than 30,000 have accessed the thesis. Hawking said by making it available he hoped to "inspire people," according to the BBC. Since May 2016, 199 requests to read the thesis were made at the Cambridge library; the next most popular thesis was only asked for just 13 times, according to Cambridge University. Before making it available for free online, individuals had to either go to the library in person to read it or pay £65 (over $85).

The thesis is located in the repository page and has been viewed 410,000 times, according to a Cambridge spokesman. Those who attempt to view or download the document might receive a gateway timeout or only receive a partial download due to the amount of people gaining the document, according to NBC News.

“It’s wonderful to hear how many people have already shown an interest in downloading my thesis – hopefully they won’t be disappointed now that they finally have access to it!” Hawking said.

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