Norbert Wiener

Norbert Wiener (November 26, 1894 – March 18, 1964) was an American mathematician and philosopher. He was a child prodigy, and as an adult he contributed significant research to the fields of stochastic and mathematical noise processes (in particular electronic engineering, electronic communication and control systems), He is also considered the founder of cybernetics. He graduated from high school at 11 and was awarded a BA in mathematics at 14, after which he started studying zoology at Harvard, transferred to Cornell to study philosophy and then went back to Harvard, where he earned a PhD at 17 with a dissertation on mathematical logic. In 1915-16 he taught at Harvard himself (philosophy, not mathematics). He eventually became a professor of mathematics at MIT, after failing to secure permanent positions at other institutions. After World War II he recruited a research team in cognitive science, with researchers in neuropsychology and the mathematics and biophysics of the nervous system, including Warren Sturgis McCulloch and Walter Pitts, but soon after creating this group he ended contact with all members. Wiener opposed what he called "the militarization of science" (political interference with scientific research), in particular in the article "A Scientist Rebels" he wrote for the January 1947 issue of The Atlantic Monthly. He won numerous awards and authored several publications. Details can be found on his Wikipedia page, where you can also find out more about the life of this extraordinary mind. Wiener is featured in Genius Genes by Michael Fitzgerald and Brendan O’Brien as likely autistic (Asperger's Syndrome).

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