Aid to Evaluating Your Accomplishments

part of Career Guide for Engineers and Scientists
Compare yourself to these four ordinary people who were selected at random:

Stoic Philosopher Marcus Aurelius

Ruled the entire world as it was known in his day; was the only Roman Emperor to refrain from disgracing himself.

(more)

Tuberculosis Sufferer Niels Henrik Abel

Developed group theory, proved the binomial theorem, and did important work in quintic equations and elliptic functions prior to his death at age 26.

(more)

Frail Lincolnshire Lad I. Newton

During an 18-month school vacation, developed calculus, inverse square law of gravitation, and laws of motion.

(more)

Madras Clerk Srinivasa Ramanujan

After failing his school examinations, Ramanujan obtained a position as a clerk in the city of Madras. Before his death at age 32, made fundamental advances in mathematics including Riemann series, the elliptic integrals, hypergeometric series and functional equations of the zeta function.

(more)

Programmed by Eve Astrid Andersson and Philip Greenspun back in the mid-1990s. If you're a nerd, you might find the source code useful.

Original Inspiration: How to Make Yourself Miserable, by Dan Greenburg


philg@mit.edu