$3 million each for 9 theorists from Yuri Milner Foundation Fundamental Physics Prize
IAS big winner.
Milner Prize: Guth (MIT), Linde (Stanford); Arkani-Hamed, Maldacena, Seiberg and Witten (IAS); Kitaev (Caltech); Kontsevich (IASS); and, Sen (Chandra Institute).
String theory, inflation and quantum computing.
Heavy on IAS, the Techs and Russian expats.
All good choices.
Follows hard on the heels of the Simons Foundation Investigator awards.
Aleiner (Columbia); Brenner (Harvard); Glotzer (Michigan); Hastings (Duke); Hirata (Caltech); Kane (UPenn); Ooguri (Caltech); Pretorius (Princeton); Quataert (UCB).
Some IAS alumns there... broader group of topics though.
Interestingly, both foundations did their inaugural awards as "fingers of god" - making their own internal choices with their own criteria, presumably in some cases with some guidance from senior scientists - I am inferring based on subtle patterns in who got the awards...
"The $3 million has already appeared in Dr. Guth's bank account, one that had had a balance of $200. "Suddenly, it said, $3,000,200," he said. "The bank charged a $12 wire transfer fee, but that was easily affordable."
Mr. Milner personally selected the inaugural group, but future recipients of the Fundamental Physics Prize, to be awarded annually, will be decided by previous winners."
Nice to see some money flowing back from the spectacular success of physics, math and computer science alumni in the technical finance sectors.
Keep it coming... pretty please.
Could be some interesting sociology of confirmation bias in future awards, we'll see how it goes.
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