Abel Prize

Two beautiful minds

Print edition : May 29, 2015

John Forbes Nash Jr. Photo: Peter Badge/Typos 1 in cooperation with HLF, 2015

Louis Nirenberg. Photo: NYU Photobureau, Hollenshead

Figure 1: This weird depiction of the human body illustrates the positive answer to Weyl's poser. The different sizes of parts of the body reflect varying neuron density. Photo: Natural History Museum, London

Figure 2: A flat torus is a square whose sides are pairwise identified. An imaginary being living in this space would exit from one side and reappear from the opposite side as happens in the case of characters in some computer games. Photo: Hevea Project

Figure 3A: Representing a flat torus in three-dimensional space by stretching it into the third dimension and joining its sides. Photo: Hevea Project

Figure 3B: The representation in Figure 3a is not ideal as it does not preserve distances. Horizontals and verticals in the square flat torus all have the same length, whereas the corresponding latitudes and longitudes are of different lengths in the embedded 3D torus. Photo: Hevea Project

Figure 4: Piling of ripples: Images of an isometric (distance-preserving) embedding of a flat torus in Euclidean space. Photo: Hevea Project/Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, U.S.

The American mathematicians John Nash Jr and Louis Nirenberg win the 2015 Abel Prize for their work on non-linear partial differential equations.
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