Meet the First Woman to Win Math’s Most Prestigious Prize

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Post by Guest on Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:48 am

As an 8-year-old, Maryam Mirzakhani used to tell herself stories about the exploits of a remarkable girl. Every night at bedtime, her heroine would become mayor, travel the world or fulfill some other grand destiny.

Today, Mirzakhani — a 37-year-old mathematics professor at Stanford University — still writes elaborate stories in her mind. The high ambitions haven’t changed, but the protagonists have: They are hyperbolic surfaces, moduli spaces and dynamical systems. In a way, she said, mathematics research feels like writing a novel. “There are different characters, and you are getting to know them better,” she said. “Things evolve, and then you look back at a character, and it’s completely different from your first impression.”



http://www.wired.com/2014/08/maryam-mirzakhani-fields-medal/





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Post by Original Quill on Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:39 am

Yep, at Stanford University...right down the road from us. And, got her PhD from Harvard University, where my daughter picked up her BA. MBA and a law degree (JD).

Love the connections.

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Post by Guest on Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:55 am

Original Quill wrote:Yep, at Stanford University...right down the road from us.  And, got her PhD from Harvard University, where my daughter picked up her BA. MBA and a law degree (JD).

Love the connections.


Indeed buddy, am very pleased to for her and your daughter of course too, where people work and study hard and excel.

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Post by Ben Reilly on Sun Aug 17, 2014 7:24 am

Yeah, novel characters do change a lot! Smile

Speaking of women pioneers, I got to observe some of that yesterday -- in the Texas capitol building in Austin, the entrance is framed by life-size marble sculptures (quite exquisite ones) of the two most important Texas founding fathers, Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston (you might recognize them from the gigantic cities named after them).

Here they are, Sam on the left, Steve on the right:

Meet the First Woman to Win Math’s Most Prestigious Prize Houston-Austin-TX-Capitol-AB-070307-Z8Q1375

They were sculpted by Elizabeth Ney, whose works were added to the permanent decor of the capitol building way back in 1894, when that was quite a big deal for a female artist.

Ney, an IMMIGRANT from Germany, went on a hunger strike for several weeks at age 19 until her parents relented and allowed her to apply to the Munich Academy of Art, where she became the first-ever female student allowed in the school.

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Post by Guest on Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:12 am

They are beautifully sculted Ben and have a majesty to them, very classical. It's quite interesting that Dame Barbara Hepworth was born not long after (1903) and has a completely different style, both in sculture and painting. That period, over the cusp of the century, changed many things in art.

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