Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Our Princeton Newsletter

m not crushin’ on Matt Damon but I AM SO CRUSHIN’ ON GEORGE DANTZIG! 

George Dantzig wearing glasses

Why?  Because he’s the newest smartypants I’ve researched silly!

Y’all probably know that George was an American mathematical scientist and Princeton professor who made important contributions to operations research, computer science, economics and statistics.  He was among the first to work at Mathematica which, frankly, not many people know about but I have a crush on them too – they are an amazing company.)

Me?  I’m over the moon about George because he inspired the famous scene in Good Will Hunting!  TRUE!

a close up of a blackboard

 

In 1939 while he was a graduate student at UC Berkeley.  Dantzig showed up late for a class.  The professor had written two examples of famously unsolved statistics problems on the blackboard. When Dantzig arrived, he assumed that the two problems were a homework assignment and wrote them down. According to Dantzig, the problems “seemed to be a little harder than usual”, but a few days later he handed in completed solutions for the two problems, still believing that they were an assignment that was overdue.

Six weeks later, Dantzig learned his “homework” had solved two of the most famous unsolved problems in statistics!  I KNOW!

How did I find out about all this?  Mathematica booked us for a private tour (which we always customize so that each participant leaves really loving Princeton and their Company) and in researching their founders I learned about George!

 (did you know Mathematica is a generous sponsor of several performance art galas in town??  TRUE!  they’ve done research to prove that access to performing arts makes for safer and smarter communities!  LOVE IT!)

Skip to toolbar