Brownian motion: a paradigm of soft matter and biological physics



This is a pedagogical introduction to Brownian motion on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Einstein's 1905 paper on the subject. After briefly reviewing Einstein's work in a contemporary context, we pursue several lines of further developments and applications to soft condensed matter and biology. Over the last century Brownian motion has been promoted from an odd curiosity of marginal scientific interest to a guiding theme pervading all of the modern life sciences.