John von Neumann is one of the most influential scientists to have ever lived, a man who was in his day as well-known as Einstein and considered smarter. Von Neumann was instrumental in the Manhattan Project and helped formulate the bedrock of Cold War geopolitics and modern economic theory. He created the first-ever programmable digital computer, prophesied the potential of nanotechnology and, from his deathbed, expounded on the limits of brains and computers - and how they might be overcome.
Ananyo Bhattacharya, science writer and former medical researcher, joins Dan on the podcast. They discuss the story of the 20th century’s foremost forgotten intellectual - who von Neumann was and his remarkable contributions to mathematics that continue to impact our lives today.