Every year, when Nobel price winners are announced, I spend time to understand the contribution made in physics and chemistry (some time in economics area ) I explore the area, winner and number of years they worked in that area, major contribution, winner’s age, degrees they received, their thesis work, their thesis advisor, and finally, application of their contribution in real life. When I immerse into this fascination and one consoling message to me was, all the recipients I studied were at least 10-15-20 years elder than me. There are young scientist in the age group of 25-30 like Prof. Lawerence (for study of x-ray crystallography) got the noble price before their 30’s but it was when my grand father was studying in middle school.
Lately, the Nobel award selection process was challenged in the area of peace and economics. I leave the \ debate to politicians. But in the field of physics and chemistry, the selection process and people who receive the awards are impeccable
This year noble price was given to Prof. Andre Geim and Prof. Konstantin Novoselov for their the study of 2D graphene. Graphene may change the silicon based integrated circuits to a carbon based chips in the future. The next generation iPad will be as thick as a credit card and graphene will play a signficiant role in it.
I sent my congratulation note to both professors.
Prof. Novoselov is of my age . It made me to think a lot during last few days.
Obviously not every one can win a Nobel price. To make a significant contribution, the first step is, we need to find the area we are good at. It sounds easy to find the area we are good at, but, it is not. In most cases, we consider ourself that we are good in lots of area. For significant contribution, should we focus on one thing that we are best at? How a person will decide what they are best at when they are good at lot of areas?
The question is, can we be best at multiple areas to make significant contribution in all those areas? Can a person win a nobel prize in physics and own a company like google and be a sport star ?
All the above questions are about on the results. In my honest opinion, when we focus more on the results of a job/project/program, we will lose focus on current task in hand. The path for your Nobel price is: Follow excellence in the area you are best at, success will chase you. Don’t chase success, you will never fully annex it!!