Generally, prizes that pay big lumps of money to well established individuals are a bit useless, it would be better to pay smaller sums to struggling beginners in the field, of which there are aplenty.
The most important part about prizes should not be the money, nor the recognition, but rather explaining better what the laureates did. In this, most prizes fail. Thus Ciro Santilli's project idea: Project to explain each Nobel Prize better.
Ah, this list: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_prizes_known_as_the_Nobel_or_the_highest_honors_of_a_field
By Zuckerberg. The selection seems decent. And natural sciences only, which is good. A bit more application oriented than the Nobel Prize it seems, e.g. 2022 separates physics and fundamental physics.
Appears to explain award reasoning even worse than the Nobel Foundation.
royalsociety.org/grants-schemes-awards/awards/copley-medal/ says it is now open to international citizens, but having a quick look at the 2010 awards still suggests that it is very British centric, or at least anglophone centric, much like the society fellowship itself. That's likely the reason why the Nobel prize won, being much more international from the start.
Good background: www.theguardian.com/science/the-h-word/2016/oct/07/prize-science-medal-history-nobel
That 15,000 canadian dollar prize though, what a joke!!
And the articles that really matter:
See Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman chapter Alfred Nobel's Other Mistake's amazing comments about the Nobel Prize.
TODO who is the digital switch person he mentions?
- www.quora.com/unanswered/Who-was-Richard-Feynman-referring-to-in-the-book-Surely-Youre-Joking-Mr-Feynman-chapter-Alfred-Nobels-Other-Mistake-when-he-talks-about-A-friend-of-mine-whos-a-rich-man-he-invented-some-kind-of-simple-digital-switch on Quora
Understand and explain amazingly every single Nobel Prize in physics, chemistry and biology. Since in particular the Nobel Foundation is unable to do that for any at all, especially of the key old ones, e.g. www.nobelprize.org/prizes/physics/1965/summary/. Hopeless.
To be fair, those in theoretical physics at least basically come down to reading a bunch of books. But perhaps anything slightly more experimental could have
Cryogenic electron microscopy, which was developped in the 70's.
This could have been a Nobel Prize in Physics as well!
For the discovery of green fluorescent protein.
To Peter D. Mitchell for the discovery of the mechanism of ATP synthesis in the mitochondria, a central part of cellular respiration.
It is quite amusing that the starting point to identifying the heat one was capsaicin, as it stimulates the exact same receptor!!!
Discovery: induced pluripotent stem cell.
This was so hot (no pun intended) and reproducible that the prize was awarded one year after discovery. Quite rare in those days already.
The key initial quantum electrodynamics experiments:
Early electron diffraction experiment from 1927 that drastically confirmed the matter wave hypothesis.
Einstein for the theoretical explanation of the photoelectric effect from 1905, notably published as on a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light by Einstein (1905).
Not only did this open the way for X-ray crystallography, it more fundamentally clarified the nature of X-rays as being electromagnetic radiation, and helped further establish the atomic theory.
The downside of the Thiel Fellowship is that it is realistically impossible for its fellows to do anything in deep tech, only information science startsup would be possible, as they would not have the labs, or lab skills required for any deep tech if they drop out before a PhD. Related: Section "The only reason for universities to exist should be the laboratories".
The only solution is the harder process of actually remodelling our very broken educational system.
More like a "lifetime achievement" though, rather than the Nobel Prize, which tends to be for more specific achievements.
E.g. International Mathematical Olympiad, International Physics Olympiad, competitive programming, etc.
Events that trick young kids into thinking that they are making progress, but only serve to distract them from what really matters, which is to dominate a state of the art as fast as possible, contact researches in the area, and publish truly novel results.
Financially backed by high schools trying to make ads showing how they will turn your kids into geniuses (but also passionate teachers who fell into this hellish system), or companies who hire machines rather than entrepreneurs.
The most triggering thing possible is when programming competitions don't release their benchmarks as open source software afterwards: at least like that they might help someone to solve their real world problems. Maybe.
On a related note, hackathons are also mostly useless. Instead of announcing a hackathon, just announce a web forum where people with similar interests can talk to one another instead, and let them code it out on GitHub if they want to. Restricting intensive development to a few days tends to produce crappy code and not reach real goals.
Some irrelevant people highlight that knowledge Olympiads can have good effects, because they are "an opportunity to meet university teachers and their research organizations". Ciro's argument is just that there are much more efficient ways to achieve those goals.
As an alternative way to get into university, this is not 100% horrible however, e.g. the University of São Paulo accepted students from olympiads in 2019 and then again 2023: jornal.usp.br/institucional/usp-oferece-200-vagas-em-mais-de-100-cursos-de-graduacao-para-alunos-participantes-de-olimpiadas-do-conhecimento/?a
A waste of time like the rest of the knowledge olympiads.
To be fair, this is one of the least worse ones.
If your kids are about to starve, fine, do it.
But otherwise, Ciro Santilli will not, ever, spend his time drilling programmer competition problems to join a company, life is too short for that.
Life is too short for that. Companies must either notice that you can make amazing open source software projects or contributions, and hire you for that, or they must fuck off.
Companies must either notice that you can make amazing projects or contributions, and hire you for that, or they must fuck off.