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'Beautiful Mind' mathematician John Nash killed in crash
Nash Equilibrium, by John Moriarty, Manchester University
Great new mathematical ideas have a balance to strike - they must be precise enough to allow detailed conclusions to be drawn, and yet sufficiently loose that they can be useful in a wide range of problems.
The Nash Equilibrium, for which he won a Nobel Prize, is just such an idea. It offered something truly new - the ability to analyse situations of conflict and co-operation and produce predictions about how people will behave.
Nash's famous equilibrium has grown to be perhaps the most important idea in economic analysis and has found application in fields as diverse as computing, evolutionary biology and artificial intelligence.
More recently it has been used in studies of corruption and also name-checked amidst the Greek financial crisis.