The work of Cédric Villani

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The work of Cédric Villani

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Title: The work of Cédric Villani
Author: Yau, Horng-Tzer
Citation: Yau, Horng-Tzer. "The work of Cedric Villani." 2010. In Proceedings of the International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM 2010), Hyderabad, India, August 19-27, 2010, vol. 1: 87.
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Abstract: The starting point of C´edric Villani’s work goes back to the introduction of entropy in the nineteenth century by L. Carnot and R. Clausius. At the time, entropy was a vague concept and its rigorous definition had to wait until the fundamental work of L. Boltzmann who introduced nonequilibrium statistical physics and the famous H functional. Boltzmann’s work, though a fundamental breakthrough, did not resolve the question concerning the nature of entropy and time arrow; the debate on this central question continued for a century until today. J. von Neumann, in recommending C. Shannon to use entropy for his uncertainty function, quipped that entropy is a good name because “nobody knows what entropy really is, so in a debate you will always have the advantage”
Published Version: doi:10.1142/9789814324359_0004
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Open Access Policy Articles, as set forth at
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