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Transcript of David Hilbert
January 3, 2013 David Hilbert Childhood Born January 23, 1862 in Konigsberg, Prussia
First born of Otto and Maria Therese Hilbert
Entered Friedrichskolleg Gymnasium in fall of 1872 but was unhappy there
Transferred to a more science-oriented school called Wilhelm Gymnasium Contributions to Mathematics Invariants
Algebraic Number Fields
Calculus of Variations "Wir mussen wissen, wir werden wissen"
("We must know, we shall know.")
- David Hilbert, last six words of his famous speech showing his enthusiasm for mathematics Hilbert graduated in 1880 from Wilhelm Gymnasium and then enrolled at University of Konigsberg. Hilbert received his doctorate in 1885 for his thesis entitled, "On the invariant properties of special binary forms, in particular the spherical harmonic functions." Hilbert remained at University of Konigsberg from 1886-1895. In 1892, he married Kathe Jerosch and they had their first child, Franz Hilbert, in 1893. Hilbert became the Chairman of Mathematics at the University of Gottingen in 1895, where he remained for the rest of his life. Hilbert's first work was on invariant theory and he proved his famous Basis Theorem in 1888. He then began a work in 1893 in Zahlberickt on algebraic number theory. The ideas of the present day subject of "Class field theory" are all contained in this work. Hilbert then studied the axioms of Euclidean geometry. This led him to propose 21 such axioms and analysed their significance. In 1899, Hilbert published "Grundlagen der Geometrie" which put geometry in a formal axiomatic setting. He challenged mathematicians to solve fundamental questions in his 23 Paris problems. These problems included the continuum hypothesis, Goldbach's conjecture, the transcendence of powers of algebraic numbers, and the extension of Dirichlet's principle. David Hilbert is mostly remembered for the concept of Hilbert space, a concept that is useful in mathematical analysis and quantum mechanics. He also contributed to the development of mathematical physics using his ideas on the kinetic gas theory and the theory of radiations. He is also recognized for "Hilbert's Paradox of the Grand Hotel", a mathematical paradox involving a hotel with an infinite number of rooms and guests. Honors Awarded to David Hilbert
Hungarian Academy of Sciences gave a special citation for Hilbert (1905)
LMS Honorary Member (1901)
Speaker at International Congress (1928)
Fellow of the Royal Society (1928)
Became honorary citizen of Konigsberg (1930)
DVR Honorary Member (1942) David Hilbert died in Gottingen, Germany on February 14, 1943. Something interesting I learned about David Hilbert is that in 1915, he discovered the correct field equations for general relativity before Albert Einstein, but never claimed priority. Hilbert had submitted his article on November 20, 1915, which was five days before Einstein had submitted his article that contained the correct equations. Einstein's article appeared on December 2, 1915, but the proofs of Hilbert's paper, which did not contain the field equations was dated December 6, 1915.
1943, the time Hilbert died in, and the Nazis had nearly completely restructured the university. "David Hilbert (January 23, 1862 – February 14, 1943) « Mathematics By Chr1855." Mathematics By Chr1855. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Dec. 2012. <http://chr1855.wordpress.com/2010/04/10/david-hilbert-january-23-1862-%E2%80%93-february-14-1943/>.
"David Hilbert." NNDB: Tracking the entire world. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Dec. 2012. <http://www.nndb.com/people/735/000087474/>. Work Cited
"Hilbert biography." MacTutor History of Mathematics. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2012. <http://www-history.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/Biographies/Hilbert.html>.
"Hilbert's Infinite Hotel - YouTube." YouTube. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Dec. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkHVaAvnaIs>.