Wolfgang Smith graduated from Cornell at age eighteen with majors in physics, mathematics, and philosophy. He subsequently contributed a theoretical solution to the re-entry problem for space flight. After taking his doctorate in mathematics at Columbia, he served for thirty years as professor of mathematics at M.I.T., U.C.L.A., and Oregon State University.
Smith then devoted himself to correcting the fallacies of scientistic belief, focusing on foundational problems pertaining to quantum theory and visual perception by way of the traditional tripartite cosmology. The Philos-Sophia Initiative Foundation created a documentary on his life and work, The End of Quantum Reality.