From Kibbutz Fishponds to the Nobel Prize: Taking Molecular Functions Into Cyberspace (Hardcover)
What Arieh Warshel and fellow 2013 Nobel laureates Michael Levitt and Martin Karplus achieved - beginning in the late 1960s and early 1970s when computers were still very primitive - was the creation of methods and programs that describe the action of biological molecules by "multiscale models". In this book, Warshel describes this fascinating, half-century journey to the apex of science.
From Kibbutz Fishponds to The Nobel Prize is as much an autobiography as an advocacy for the emerging field of computational science. We follow Warshel through pivotal moments of his life, from his formative years in war-torn Israel in an idealistic kibbutz that did not encourage academic education; to his time in the army and his move to the Technion where he started in his obsession of understanding the catalytic power of enzymes; to his eventual scientific career which took him to the Weizmann Institute, Harvard University, Medical Research Council, and finally University of Southern California. We read about his unique contributions to the elucidation of the molecular basis of biological functions, which are combined with instructive stories about his persistence in advancing ideas that contradict the current dogma, and the nature of his scientific struggle for recognition, both personal and for the field to which he devoted his life. This is, in so many ways, more than just a memoir: it is a profoundly inspirational tale of one man's odyssey from a kibbutz that did not allow him to go to a university to the pinnacle of the scientific world, highlighting that the correct mixture of persistence, talent and luck can lead to a Nobel Prize.