July 01, 2018
Today’s Google doodle celebrates the birth date of German polymath and philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz. So who was he?

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was born on July 1, 1646, in Leipzig, Germany toward the end of the devastating Thirty Years’ War.
His father, a Professor of Moral Philosophy, died when he was six years old, and he was raised by his mother.
After his father’s death, Leibniz inherited his extensive library, which is where his ideas began to take shape.
Leibniz’s life was defined by academics: He has his undergraduate in philosophy by the age of 15, achieved a masters degree the next year, and was awarded his bachelor’s degree in law at the age of 17 after only one year of studies.
His philosophical writings consist mainly of journal articles, manuscripts published long after his death, and many letters to many correspondents.
Through his life, Leibniz’s most notable accomplishment is considered to be his conception of the ideas of differential and integral calculus independently and simultaneously with Isaac Newton's similar conceptions.
In 1676, Isaac Newton accused him of having seen his unpublished work on calculus.
There was alleged to be evidence to prove that Leibniz stole calculus from Newton.
Google doodle: Who was Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz? What does the doodle mean?
Mathematicians have come to favour Leibniz’s notation as the conventional expression of calculus, while Newton’s became unused.
Leibniz’s later years were plagued by these accusations of plagiarism, a period known as the 'calculus priory dispute'.
By the time of his death in Hanover 1716, aged 70, he had fallen out of favour in society, including amongst British Royalty, with whom he has ties.
Even though Leibniz was a life member of the Royal Society and the Berlin Academy of Sciences, neither organisation saw fit to honour his death.
Google doodle: Who was Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz? What does the doodle mean?
His grave went unmarked for more than 50 years.
Historians of mathematics writing since 1900 or so have tended to acquit Leibniz, pointing to important differences between Leibniz's and Newton's versions of calculus.
In 1900, British philosopher Bertrand Russell published a critical study of Leibniz's metaphysics, making his ideas respectable to a modern audience.
In 1985, it seemed Leibniz had finally redeemed himself, when the German government created the Leibniz Prize, offering an annual award euros for experimental and theoretical projects.
Google doodle: Who was Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz? What does the doodle mean?
What does the doodle mean?
Today, Leibniz can be seen all around us: he refined the binary number system, which is the foundation of virtually all digital computers.
Today’s Google doodle is written in binary code: It says, simply, ‘Google’.
It seems a fitting tribute to Leibniz on his 372nd birthday.
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