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John Von Neumann

January 2, 2013

By chance, I have run across multiple references to John Von Neumann material over the last few of weeks.   Von Neumann’s was an astoundingly broad and vigorous intellect and I have been intrigued by his life, creativity and contributions since first hearing about him. He is not one of the most famous 20th century scientist, though he shows up in close proximity to nearly every major character and contribution you have heard about–computability, game theory, economics, quantum mechanics, the Manhattan project…  Amazing!

There is a 45-year old documentary on YouTube that is fascinating for a number of reasons and gives a good overview of a few of Von Neumann’s contributions.

And don’t miss part 2 in which Paul Halmos says Johnny could have made a contribution if he had only applied himself…

Download (and read!) Von Neumann’s and Morgenstern’s classic work on game theory: Theory of Games and Economic Behavior.

Hat tips: Interesting post from Carson at Science Clearing House, MathJesus’ tweet of math history link on Von Neumann’s birthday.


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