Born in Petoskey, Michigan, I attended public school, while showing a love for mechanical and electrical things...constructing airplane models, a radio-controlled model boat, and a wireless telegraph system to a friend's house a half-mile away.
Studying at the University of Michigan, I was greatly impacted by a course on George Boole's logic...and also earned a double degree in electrical engineering and mathematics.
As a graduate student in electrical engineering at MIT, I was able to work on Vannevar Bush's differential analyzer, an early analog computer....which led to my Master's Thesis on A Symbolic Analysis of Relay and Switching Circuits...some consider it "possibly the most important, and also the most famous, master's thesis of the century."
After getting a Ph.D. at MIT for my thesis An Algebra for Theoretical Genetics, I worked at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton (NJ)...interacting with Hermann Weyl, John von Neumann, Albert Einstein, and Kurt Gödel.
During WWII, I worked at Bell Labs on cryptography (codebreaking and secure telecommunications primarily)...even worked with Alan Turing briefly.
Considered the founder of both digital computers and digital circuit design theory, I am best known as "the father of information theory," which is the foundation of the digital revolution and every device containing a microprocessor or microcontroller.
On a lighter side, I enjoyed juggling, unicycling, and chess...and invented rocket-powered flying discs, a motorized pogo stick, flame-throwing trumpet, a box called the "Ultimate Machine" (check it out on YouTube), a device that solved Rubik's Cube, and was the co-inventor of the first wearable computer.
Claude Shannon (1916 - 2001)