Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Rest in Peace, Nobel Laureate Kenneth G. Wilson

My husband, who has a PhD in physics, told me the sad news today that the Nobel laureate in physics, Dr. Kenneth G. Wilson, has died.

I remember him so fondly, since in the late 1980s and early 1990s, I was heavily involved in supercomputing and parallel processing and utilized the Cornell National Supercomputer Facility, which Dr. Wilson led. I had heard hi speak on several occasions and enjoyed his vision very much.

I also served for several years on the National Allocation Committee for time at this supercomputer facility, which utilized primarily IBM computers.

My work there blended computational economics with operations research and many applications to spatial economics. I would fly to Ithaca several times a year and always enjoyed my time there.

In addition, IBM at that time would host outstanding short workshops on various themes in idyllic Lech, Austria and I spoke both at the Computational Economics one there and at the Computational Finance one and recall even seeing Dr. Alan King of OR/MS fame at one of them.

After Dr. Wilson's extended time at Cornell he then joined the faculty at Ohio State University.

He enjoyed hiking especially in the Dolomites, the Swiss Alps, and in New Zealand and he got many of his ideas while hiking. I do as well.

Rest in Peace, Dr. Wilson -- you will be missed.

An obituary on Professor Wilson is here.