Michael Levitt, of Stanford University; Martin Karplus of Strasbourg University; and Arieh Warshel of the University of Southern California have been awarded the Nobel Prize for chemistry. However the researchers themselves acknowledge that their breakthroughs in modeling proteins couldn't have been done without recent advances in computing. In an article by the BBC Michael Levitt said this success was due in large part to the spectacular performance of modern computing: "I've told people that the silent partner in this prize is the incredible development in computer power. When we started this, no-one had any clue that computers were going to become so powerful; no-one knew about Moore's Law. This incredible increase in computer power has taken everybody by surprise, and I think this is one of the reasons why our field has become so important. And it's just going to get bigger and bigger."
[This post was suggested by Mark Wilson]