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2014 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize Winners

A Tenacious Explorer of Abstract Surfaces

Maryam Mirzakhani, who became the first woman Fields medalist for drawing deep connections between topology, geometry and dynamical systems, has died of cancer at the age of 40. This is our 2014 profile of her life and work.

2014 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize Winners

A Brazilian Wunderkind Who Calms Chaos

Artur Avila’s solutions to ubiquitous problems in chaos theory have “changed the face of the field,” earning him Brazil’s first Fields Medal.

Manjul Bhargava video
2014 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize Winners

The Musical, Magical Number Theorist

The search for artistic truth and beauty has led Manjul Bhargava to some of the most profound recent discoveries in number theory, which have helped earn him the Fields Medal.

Melpomene
genetics

As Animals Mingle, a Baffling Genetic Barrier

Despite swapping DNA through interbreeding, butterflies and other animals can maintain distinct species.

Multicellularity
evolution

Where Animals Come From

Bacteria may have helped single-celled organisms make the leap to multicellular animals.

Katherine Freese
Q&A

In Search of Dark Stars

Katherine Freese, a physicist who will soon lead the Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics, reflects on the hunt for dark matter and how dark matter heating may have produced the first stars.

Biology

The New Science of Evolutionary Forecasting

Newly discovered patterns in evolution may help scientists make accurate short-term predictions.

origins of life

Hints of Life’s Start Found in a Giant Virus

Newly discovered specimens support a more ancient origin for viruses, perhaps all the way back to the origins of life.

David Spergel
Q&A

A Bold Critic of the Big Bang’s ‘Smoking Gun’

The cosmologist David Spergel explains why a widely publicized gravitational-wave discovery could be wrong, and how the “overreaching” study could affect the public’s perception of science.