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Portrait of Andrei Andreyevich Markov (1856-1922), Russian mathematician. Markov was educated at the University of St.Petersburg, becoming professor of mathematics there in 1893. Although interested in diverse areas of mathematics, his main contribution was in probability theory. In 1900 he published "Probability Calculus", a major work, and by 1906 had proposed the 'Markov Chain'. This is a sequence of random variables where two probabilities, conditional upon different amounts of data about the early part of the sequence, are the same. Markov applied this to linguistics, but later generations have found the Markov Chain important in quantum theory and genetics.
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