I’m Philip Emeagwali. My contributions to computational physics is this: I discovered how to solve grand challenge problems, known as the most computation-intensive problems arising in calculus and algebra. The parallel supercomputing solution of these grand challenge problems has large impact on humanity. I was thirty-four years old, on the Fourth of July 1989, when I discovered how to execute 47,303 floating-point arithmetical operations per second per CPU that was a member of an ensemble of 65,536 processors. I was in the news headlines as the African supercomputer genius

that won top U.S. prize

and won it for discovering how to harness the world’s slowest processors

and use them to execute

the world’s fastest supercomputer

calculations

and also execute them

while solving the toughest real-world initial-boundary value problems

arising in computational physics, abstract calculus,

and extreme-scale algebra.

I totaled those calculations across

my new internet

that was my new global network

of 65,536

central processing units.

I totaled those calculations

on the Fourth of July 1989

and did so to discover

the world’s fastest computation

of 3.1 billion calculations per second.

That ultrafast calculation that I executed

across that new internet

made the news headlines

because I unveiled

the new parallel processed solution

to the grand challenge problems

arising in STEM fields.

To experimentally discover

parallel supercomputing

requires a mathematical maturity

that includes knowing

the partial differential equation,

and knowing it

both forward and backward.

The reason is that

the partial differential equation,

or rather, it’s finite difference

algebraic approximation,

is the most recurring decimal

inside the parallel supercomputer.

Like the physical maturity needed

to win a marathon race,

the mathematical maturity needed

to parallel process across a new internet must grow with experience.

It took me fifteen years

onward of June 20, 1974

of fulltime study and research

to master how to solve a system of

partial differential equations

and to deeply understand

how to formulate it from first principles

and on the blackboard

and how to solve that system across motherboards

and how to use

my new parallel supercomputing knowledge

to discover and recover

otherwise elusive crude oil

and natural gas

that were buried millions of years ago and buried one-mile deep in an oilfield

that is the size of a town,

such as those in the Niger-Delta region

of Nigeria

that is my country of birth.

What is Philip Emeagwali Known For?

In 1989, I was in the news because

I experimentally discovered

how to parallel process across

a new internet

that’s a new global network

of 65,536 tightly-coupled

central processing units

that shared nothing between each other.

As a ten-year-old

walking to school along Gbenoba Street, Agbor, Nigeria,

I could not explain why

I had to learn the quadratic equation.

Nor did I understand how

the quadratic equation

will help solve the economic problems

of Nigeria.

To us students

at Saint John’s Primary School,

Agbor, (Nigeria),

solving the quadratic equation

was merely mental gymnastics

that had no real-life application.

To us students, it seemed like

the quadratic equation

was invented to mentally torture us.

Fast forward twenty-five years

from 1964

from Agbor (Nigeria)

to Los Alamos (New Mexico,

United States),

I became the subject of

school inventor reports

in the U.S.

and was so because

my experimental discovery

of practical parallel supercomputing

was the new knowledge

that was not

in computer science textbooks

that led to the development

of new supercomputers

that can be up to one billion times

faster than old supercomputers.

I am studied in American schools

for my contribution

to the development of the computer.

I am the subject of school reports

on inventors,

in part, because the quadratic equation

of algebra

increased my mathematical maturity.

That maturity was a pre-requisite

to solving the once-impossible to solve partial differential equations

and to parallel supercomputing

the solution of the companion

large-scale algebraic equations

that must be solved prior to discovering and recovering otherwise elusive

crude oil and natural gas.

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