Norbert Wiener, US mathematician

Norbert Wiener, US mathematician

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Credit: EMILIO SEGRE VISUAL ARCHIVES/AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Norbert Wiener (1894-1964), US mathematician, sitting at a desk in front of a blackboard. Wiener was a youthful prodigy, graduating in mathematics at the age of 14. He then studied zoology and philosophy, attaining his doctorate aged 17. He later became Professor of Mathematics at MIT (1932-1960). He produced important results in stochastic (random) processes and then worked on weapons feedback systems in World War II. This inspired his thoughts on combining electronic devices and neural physiology, and he proceeded to found the field of cybernetics. His awards include the National Medal of Science in 1963.

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