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Alexander Mitov

Science and society

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What is the driver of science: the scientific merit or the all too natural for humans desire for personal gain? No answer here, just the following story:

Grigori Perelman: the man that solved the Poincaré conjecture but declined the Fields Medal and the $1M Millennium Prize.

The story sounds as no less than a Hollywood blockbuster. It clearly makes anyone's imagination run wild in the search for a rational (or more likely irrational) explanation. Even the word genius seems not to have enough weight to describe the picture. I was myself in a search of a "rational" explanation of how something like that might be possible, until ... I read the comments by Perelman himself quoted in the New Yorker (see also the Wikipedia article on Perelman):

“... there are many mathematicians who are more or less honest. But almost all of them are conformists. They are more or less honest, but they tolerate those who are not honest.”

Last Updated ( Sunday, 26 September 2010 21:58 )