Friday, 27 January 2023

Hard Homework

From   Tales of Statisticians..

Neyman was invited to Berkeley in 1938. Berkeley, as he put it, was "tabula rasa" - no statistical study at all then existed. None of these deeply rooted London antagonisms: he was getting in at the foundations.
Neyman's mention of two unsolved problems, including the Gosset/Student problem, in a Berkeley lecture in 1940, would have been of little consequence had George B Dantzig not been late to that particular class. He mistook the unsolved problems on the blackboard for a homework assignment, and wound up solving both of them. Neyman took the initiative in getting Dantzig's papers published, and thus launched Dantzig's career. Dantzig's discovery is legendary, and Neyman's generous response deserves to be legendary also: not all teachers will tolerate a student who discovers something in their presence, and few of those will take the initiative in getting that student's work published.

Love these stories...

George Bernard Dantzig (/ˈdæntsɪɡ/; November 8, 1914 – May 13, 2005) was an American mathematical scientist who made contributions to industrial engineering, operations research, computer science, economics, and statistics.

Dantzig is known for his development of the simplex algorithm, an algorithm for solving linear programming problems, and for his other work with linear programming. 

At his death, Dantzig was the Professor Emeritus of Transportation Sciences and Professor of Operations Research and of Computer Science at Stanford University.

His father, Tobias Dantzig, was a mathematician and linguist, and his mother, Anja Dantzig (née Ourisson), was a Russian-born linguist of French-Lithuanian origin. Dantzig's parents met during their study at the University of Paris, where Tobias studied mathematics under Henri Poincaré, after whom Dantzig's brother was named. The Dantzigs immigrated to the United States, where they settled in Portland, Oregon.

Early in the 1920s the Dantzig family moved from Baltimore to Washington, D.C. His mother became a linguist at the Library of Congress, and his father became a math tutor at the University of Maryland, College Park.  *Wik

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