Garrett Birkhoff

Picture of Garrett Birkhoff

Date of Birth: 01/19/1911

Age: 85

Place of birth: Princeton

Citizenship: United States

Specialist lattice theory.

Garrett Birkhoff - American mathematician, best known for his research in the field of lattice theory.

Garrett Birkhoff was born in the family of another famous mathematician George Birkhoff (George David Birkhoff), which to some extent determined his fate. The 1928th Garrett already went to Harvard, where he began to be trained in the standard baccalaureate program. Birkhoff received a bachelor`s degree in 1932 ohms; then he moved to Cambridge, where for some time he studied mathematical physics. This is an area for long fascinated Garrett; Over time, he came under the wing of the Hall to Philip (Philip Hall) and took up the study of abstract algebra. In Garret Munich University met with Constantine Caratheodory (Constantin Carath & # 233; odory); namely Caratheodory Garrett advised to familiarize with two fairly important works, strongly influenced naego further research. Trudy van der Waerden (Bartel Leendert van der Waerden) on abstract algebra and work Speiser (Andreas Speiser) on group theory Birkhoff discovered a new field with which he plunged headlong.

PhD Birkhoff never received, although in the British educational system on it while a special accent and did not do; Moreover, Garrett did not get, and a master`s degree. This, however, did not prevent him from becoming a member of the Harvard Society and to the end of his career teaching at Harvard.

In the 30 Birkhoff and his colleagues at Harvard Marshall Stone (Marshall Stone) and Saunders MacLane (Saunders Mac Lane) seriously promoted American abstract algebra. In 1941 Birkhoff and MacLane released the second in the country`s history textbook on the subject; in parallel, they released a series of articles, and in 1940 saw the light of a monograph on the theory of lattices Garrett. In 1935, Garrett has published an article `On the Structure of Abstract Algebras`, which, in fact, laid the foundation for a new field of mathematics, universal algebra. Of course, to some extent relied on the work of Birkhoff predecessors (especially Alfred North Whitehead (Alfred North Whitehead), even in the 1898th published a monograph on a similar topic).

During World War II Birkhoff switched to a `inzhenernuyu` kind of mathematics; In particular, he worked on radar and doing ballistics. During the development of new weapons pop up a lot of problems purely mathematical sense; so quite complex in terms of computational fluid dynamics was spending direction. In this area, a mathematician and spent quite active research by publishing a series of interesting articles and texts.

I do not leave `engineering matematiku` Garrett and after the war. Being a close friend of John von Neumann (John von Neumann), Birkhoff watched with great interest the development of the early models of computers devices. Is his time and less mechanical field; because, written under his guidance master`s thesis David Young (David M. Young) was devoted to the numerical solution of differential equations Poisson partial. Young in his work offered new and interesting method of successive relaxations.

Later Birkhoff worked for some time with Richard Varga (Richard S. Varga), one of his former students; Together, they worked in the laboratory of `Westinghouse` Corporation in Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh), engaged in the development of new nuclear reactors. Provided George and consulting services; so that for some time he worked with the `General Motors`.

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