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John Forbes Nash Jr.
Transcript of John Forbes Nash Jr.
John Forbes Nash Jr.
- Born on June 13, 1928 in Bluefield, West Virginia
- Named after his father, an electrical engineer
- His mother, Margaret Virginia Martin, was a schoolteacher
- His younger sister Martha was born 2 years after
- Was raised by a loving family that valued education
- Showed interest in books and science from a young age
- Lacked social skills and did not care to play with other children
- Began performing scientific experiments at age 12 in his room
- Earned a doctorate in 1950 with a 28-page thesis on non-cooperative games, which was later called "Nash Equilibrium"
- Was awarded the John von Neumann Theory Prize in 1978 for "Nash Equilibrium"
- Won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1994 for the "Nash Equilibrium" and his contributions to game theory
-Received the Leroy P. Steele Prize in 1999
- Was nominated for a Double Helix Medal in 2010
- Did groundbreaking work in the field of real algebraic geometry
- Produced the "Nash Embedding Theorem"
- Proved Brouwer's fixed point theorem
- Broke one of Riemann's most perplexing mathematical conundrums
Personal Life & Challenges
- John and Alicia divorced in 1963 and remarried in 2001; however, they still continued to live together for some time while divorced.
- He went in and out of treatment for over 10 years, and made his recovery in the 1980s-1990s.
- His son John Charles also grew up to be a mathematician experiencing schizophrenia.
- The family resides in West Windsor Township, New Jersey.
"Johnny was always different. [My parents] knew he was different. And they knew he was bright. He always wanted to do things his way. Mother insisted I do things for him, that I include him in my friendships. ... but I wasn't too keen on showing off my somewhat odd brother." -Martha Nash
- Graduated from Bluefield High School in 1945
- Went to Carnegie Institute of Technology (Carnegie Mellon University) on a scholarship provided by the George Westinghouse Award
- Received a BA and MA in mathematics in 1948 from CIT
- Pursued graduate studies in mathematics at Princeton with the John S. Kennedy fellowship
- Earned his PhD in 1950 from Princeton University
Carnegie Mellon University
"This man is a genius."
-R.J. Duffin, Nash's adviser and professor at Carnegie Mellon
- Nash lacked social skills and was humiliated and bullied throughout school, as well as alienated by his colleagues.
- He was a mathematics instructor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1951-1959.
- Nash had a son, John David Stier, with Eleanor Stier in 1953. He was unwilling to care for the child or marry Eleanor.
- He married Alicia Lopez-Harrison de Larde in 1957.
- In 1958, Alicia became pregnant and Nash began to experience the first signs of mental illness.
- Their son, John Charles Martin Nash, was born in 1959 while Nash was hospitalized and diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.
John and Alicia (1957)
Alicia and John Charles ( (1961)
John and Alicia (2010)
West Windsor Township, New Jersey
Major Publications by John F. Nash Jr.
- "Equilibrium Points in N-person Games"
- "The Bargaining Problem"
- "Non-cooperative Games"
- "Two-person Cooperative Games"
- "Real algebraic manifolds"
- The Essential John Nash
- Essays on Game Theory
Some Famous People Alive During Nash's Life
Franklin D. Roosevelt
F. Scott Fitzgerald
Martin Luther King
Some World Events During Nash's Life
- Discovery of Pluto
- Disney cartoons become popular
- World War II
- Establishment of NATO
- Discovery of DNA
- Cold War
- End of segregation in the United States
- Foundation of NASA
- Environmental Revolution
- Cuban Missile Crisis
- MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech
- Vietnam War
- First heart transplant
- First Super Bowl
- Digital Revolution
- Aids epidemic
- Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster
- Start of Wikipedia
- Iraq War
- 9/11 terrorist attack
- Uprise of social networking sites
- B.P. Oil Spill
- Developments from his advances and discoveries in game theory have led to changes in economics and political science
- Nash's theories on equilibrium are also applied to population genetics and evolutionary biology
- His work could be applied to a wide range of decision making- from playing Rock Paper Scissors to fighting international wars
Why is his work important today?
A Beautiful Mind
- 2001 film based on the life of John Nash
- Inspired by the 1998 book by Sylvia Nasar
- Grossed over $313 million worldwide
- Won four Academy Awards
- Did not portray his life accurately
- John and Alicia were played by Russel Crowe and Brooke Shields
Where is John Nash now?
John Nash currently resides in West Windsor Township, New Jersey, with his wife Alicia and youngest son John Charles. His son is also a victim of schizophrenia. John Nash is now free of any signs of mental illness and holds the position of Senior Research Mathematician at Princeton University.