Norbert Wiener

American mathematician and philosopher / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Norbert Wiener (November 26, 1894 – March 18, 1964) was an American mathematician and philosopher. He was a professor of mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). A child prodigy, Wiener later became an early researcher in stochastic and mathematical noise processes, contributing work relevant to electronic engineering, electronic communication, and control systems.

Quick facts: Norbert Wiener, Born, Died, Nationality, Educ...
Norbert Wiener
Wiener in undated photograph[1]
Born(1894-11-26)November 26, 1894
DiedMarch 18, 1964(1964-03-18) (aged 69)
Stockholm, Sweden
EducationTufts College, BA 1909
Cornell University, MA, 1911
Harvard University, PhD 1913
Known for
Margaret Engemann
(m. 1926)
AwardsBôcher Memorial Prize (1933)
National Medal of Science (1963)
Scientific career
InstitutionsMassachusetts Institute of Technology
ThesisA Comparison Between the Treatment of the Algebra of Relatives by Schroeder and that by Whitehead and Russell (1913)
Doctoral advisors
  • Karl Schmidt[2]
Other academic advisorsJosiah Royce[3]
Doctoral students

Wiener is considered the originator of cybernetics, the science of communication as it relates to living things and machines,[4] with implications for engineering, systems control, computer science, biology, neuroscience, philosophy, and the organization of society. His work heavily influenced computer pioneer John von Neumann, information theorist Claude Shannon, anthropologists Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson, and others.

Norbert Wiener is credited as being one of the first to theorize that all intelligent behavior was the result of feedback mechanisms, that could possibly be simulated by machines and was an important early step towards the development of modern artificial intelligence.[5]