In Memoriam

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RIP Martin Landau, the actor who starred in Mission Impossible TV series and Space 1999 as well in numerous films has died aged 89


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Maryam Mirzakhani aged 40

Iranian maths genius and the first woman to be awarded the Fields Medal for her work on the geometry of curved surfaces


Mathematics throws up many complex problems and Maryam Mirzakhani relished solving them, particularly if they involved Riemannian geometry, the study of curved surfaces. One of the most troublesome problems presented by the subject, however, is the lack of recognition for women in the field.

Mirzakhani may not have solved that one alone, but she went a long way to gaining recognition for female mathematicians when, in 2014, she was the first woman to be awarded the Fields Medal, the most prestigious international prize in mathematics, since it was established in 1936. Although her work on a formula that traces the geometry of curved surfaces was described as a “deep contribution” to her field, it was the hole that she blasted through one of academia’s most impenetrable glass ceilings that had the most impact.

Her success, for mathematics and for women, drew acclaim from President Rouhani. Professor Sir Tim Gowers, from the University of Cambridge, said that he hoped that her win would “put to bed many myths about women and mathematics, and encourage more young women to think of mathematical research as a possible career”.


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Mary Turner has died aged 79.

President of the GMB, queen of the dinner ladies and a tireless worker  for free school meals.

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