Michael Nielsen is one of the pioneers of quantum computation. He was educated at the University of Queensland, and as a Fulbright Scholar in the group of Carl Caves at the University of New Mexico. He worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory, at Caltech as the Richard Chace Tolman Prize Fellow, at the University of Queensland as Foundation Professor of Quantum Information Science and a Federation Fellow, and at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics as a Senior Faculty member. In 2008, Nielsen gave up his tenured academic position in order to write his book Reinventing Discovery.
Together with Ike Chuang of MIT, he wrote the standard text on quantum computation. His research contributions include the majorization theorem governing the manipulation of entangled quantum states, involvement in one of the first quantum teleportation experiments (related), named as one of Science Magazine’s Top Ten Breakthroughs of the Year for 1998, quantum gate teleportation, quantum process tomography, and critical contributions to the formula for the quantum channel capacity (1, 2, 3).