Questions asking for a "big list" of examples, illustrations, etc. Ask only when the topic is compelling, and please do not use this as the only tag for a question.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

4
votes
6answers
191 views

What are some false proofs for true or false statements where the error in the proof is not obvious? [closed]

I'm looking for examples of subtle errors in reasoning in a mathematical proof. An example of a 'false' proof would be Let $a=b>0$. Then $a^2 - b^2 = ab - b^2$. Factoring, we have $(a-b)(a+b) = ...
39
votes
18answers
6k views

What are some things we can prove they must exist, but have no idea what they are?

What are some things we can prove they must exist, but have no idea what they are? Examples I can think of: Values of the Busy beaver function: It is a well-defined function, but not computable. It ...
14
votes
11answers
479 views

Different ways finding the derivative of $\sin$ and $\cos$.

I am looking for different ways of differentiating $\sin$ and $\cos$, especially when using the geometric definition, but ways that use other defintions are also welcome. Please include the ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Books that emphasize physical applications

I made a book recommendation thread recently which got deleted, so I'm hoping this one doesn't have the same fate as the question seems much more defined. I was reading an interesting article by VI ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

Composition of non-differentiable functions to produce a differentiable one

What are examples of non-differentiable functions which when composed form a differentiable function? It would even better if they are $C^\infty$ I am hoping this will turn into a big list, if it ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

Useful matrix inner products

What are some interesting/useful examples of matrix inner products on square complex matrices, other than $\langle A, B \rangle = Tr(A^{\dagger}B)$?
2
votes
1answer
52 views

List of textbooks that take a historical approach

As the title suggests my aim in this topic is to make a big list of textbooks on any mathematical topic that take a historical approach. I will start with the ones I know: Thomas Muir - The theory of ...
9
votes
0answers
136 views

Explicit examples of (co)limit arguments in other fields

Over the past weeks, I have noticed that high level lecture notes in subjects like algebraic geometry, algebra, and algebraic topology often sketch proofs in the following form: Proof sketch ...
4
votes
2answers
137 views

Applications of algebraic graph theory

What are some subtle, or non-obvious applications of algebraic graph theory? Obviously it can be used to study anything directly involving graphs (for instance, the wikipedia page mentions ...
1
vote
0answers
65 views

What families of transcendental equations do we have solved?

I'm particularly interested in transcendental equations but searching in internet gives me only results about the classical linear-exponential equation (which is solved with Lambert's W) and its ...
9
votes
5answers
132 views

$32$ Goldbach Variations - Papers presenting a single gem in number theory or combinatorics from different point of view

A short time ago I found the nice paper Thirty-two Goldbach Variations written by J.M. Borwein and D.M. Bradley. It presents $32$ different proofs of the Euler sum identity \begin{align*} ...
8
votes
3answers
340 views

Elementary topology examples

I'm preparing (to teach) my first class of undergraduate topology and I'm looking for some elementary, motivating applications of topology for the first day. We'll be following Munkres, starting with ...
5
votes
1answer
142 views

A beautiful book on arithmetic doesn't treat you like a little baby

The state of arithmetic today is disgusting. The textbooks on it are absolutely repelling, the authors treat it like a subject that will be of concern to only babies. They don't show any love, they ...
3
votes
7answers
300 views

Alternate ways to prove that $4$ divides $5^n-1$

I was working for various method to solve this: For all $n\in \mathbb N$: $4\;\mid\;(5^{n}-1)$. My try was: 1st: $$n=1 \to 4|5^1-1\\n \geq 2 \to 5^n=25,125,625,3125,...\\ n\geq 2 \to ...
1
vote
2answers
91 views

What are some unfamiliar and/or special tricks used to evaluate limits?

What are some neat tricks used to evaluate limits that might be otherwise a problem to deal with? I'm not asking for methods akin to L'Hopital's rule.. which is often used. My question is geared ...
0
votes
4answers
135 views

Proof of Pythagorean theorem without using geometry for a high school student?

There are some proofs of Pythagoras theorem which don't even require high school maths to understand, but they all are using shapes to prove of the theorem. However, I am trying to find some proofs of ...
2
votes
1answer
160 views

(Theoretical) Complex Analysis Textbooks [closed]

Most books I've seen on complex analysis do not develop it theoretically, which can be somewhat infuriating for the budding pure mathematician. What I am looking for are some comprehensive, rigorous ...
23
votes
15answers
1k views

New Idea to prove $1+2x+3x^2+\cdots=(1-x)^{-2}$

Given $|x|<1 $ prove that $\\1+2x+3x^2+4x^3+5x^4+...=\frac{1}{(1-x)^2}$. 1st Proof: Let $s$ be defined as $$ s=1+2x+3x^2+4x^3+5x^4+\cdots $$ Then we have $$ \begin{align} ...
0
votes
0answers
162 views

Final year dissertation/project ideas for numerical methods

In my final year, I have to submit a project/dissertation on Numerical Methods. I have done a course on it, which included some proofs and programming. Just eager to get ideas that I can look at. PS ...
4
votes
2answers
481 views

Interesting facts and problems to motivate high school combinatorics students

I will give some classes in combinatorics to high school students and I would like to know some facts (and proof) I can show to my students to motivate them to study this beautiful subject. I'm ...
3
votes
4answers
117 views

Are there any books with lots of questions of “Fill in The holes” type

Does anyone knows books which have lots of questions ,whose format are like fill in the holes type . . Same goes for theorems and exercises . I am looking on pure math especially Real analysis ...
4
votes
2answers
154 views

What is the most general notion of “Fourier transform?”

I know the definition of a classical Fourier transform that maps a function f(x) on the real line X to a function F(p) on a dual space (here another real line and borrowing some physics notation) P. ...
7
votes
1answer
156 views

Elegant applications of advanced techniques to “olympiad” problems

I am interested in applications of somewhat "advanced machinery" (with respect to the usual machinery involved in these cases, which is usually elementary) to olympiad or (high school-level) contest ...
2
votes
3answers
91 views

Application of Euler's theorem apart from finding last digits of huge numbers

I am looking for clever applications of Euler's Theorem. On browsing the internet, I see that nearly all the applications of the theorem asks for finding last few digits of a huge number. The only ...
0
votes
3answers
92 views

Alternative infinite summations that equal $e$

Everyone (and I mean everyone) knows this sum: $$\sum_{n=0}^\infty \frac{1}{k!} =e$$ Are there any lesser known infinite sums that go to e?
0
votes
0answers
41 views

List of divergent series and their summations

On the web one can manage to find a lot of lists of convergent series and their summation btw I didn't find (at least on a quick search) a corrispective list of divergent series, does anyone know one ...
0
votes
0answers
34 views

Looking for problems which can be solved by the similar technique

While browsing on internet for different proofs of Fermat's theorem on sums of two squares, I came across Zagier's "one-sentence proof" which seems to be the most elegant and short proof. It invokes a ...
5
votes
2answers
155 views

Characterizations of the cross-ratio

$$ (z_1,z_2;z_3,z_4) = \frac{(z_1-z_3)(z_2-z_4)}{(z_2-z_3)(z_1-z_4)} $$ What are the most prominent or most interesting theorems of the following form? Theorem: The cross-ratio is the only function ...
5
votes
0answers
77 views

“Toys” spaces in algebraic topology

I did follow a course of algebraic topology last semester and I still want to continue to do some computations. But in many books it's all the time the same examples which comes back for computing ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

open problems regarding functions

I am looking for some open problems regarding functions. Problems like, Whether a function satisfying some properties say, X,Y,Z, exists or not, is unknown. Like there is no function $f(x)$ such ...
12
votes
10answers
813 views

What are the most prominent uses of transfinite induction outside of set theory?

What are the most prominent uses of transfinite induction in fields of mathematics other than set theory? (Was it used in Cantor's investigations of trigonometric series?)
7
votes
5answers
124 views

$e^{i\theta}$ versus $\cos\theta+i\sin\theta$

I am teaching an basic university maths course, and have been thinking about the complex numbers part. Specifically, I was wondering why I should include Euler's formula in my course. This led me to ...
2
votes
1answer
123 views

Real analysis : Preliminary topics for - Measure Theory, Integration Theory, Differentiation and Integration [closed]

I have following syllabus to study in Real Analysis Subject. I want to know, What are necessary topics that I have to cover as a prerequisite for below syllabus. Actually I am unable to get direction ...
67
votes
34answers
8k views

Easy math proofs or visual examples to make high school students enthusiastic about math [closed]

I'm a teacher in mathematics at a high school. Math has fascinated me for almost my entire life, so I would like to bring that enthusiasm to my students with beautiful yet easy to understand proofs or ...
2
votes
1answer
220 views

Coordinate Geometry and Trigonometry book recommendation for GRE Math Subject Test

I am currently a math major at university and I plan to take GRE Math Subject Test in future (most probably next year). Can you please suggest any good book for revising and brushing up Coordinate ...
1
vote
2answers
102 views

Counting the number of solutions of equation $x^2 + y^2 = 1$ over $\Bbb Z/p$

List proofs of the fact that the number of solutions to $x^2 + y^2 = 1$ over $\Bbb Z/p$, where $p$ is a prime $\neq 2$, is $p-(-1)^{\frac{p-1}2}$. I thought of two. I write one below.
0
votes
2answers
87 views

Lists of the first fundamental group of spaces. [closed]

Here are some list to start with $$\begin{array}{c|c|c|} \hline Space(S)& \pi_1(S) \\ \hline \mathbb{R}^2&0 \\ \hline \mathbb{S}^1& \mathbb{Z} \\ \hline 1-Torus& ...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

Are there unsolved problems known to be not independent of the axiomatic system it is proposed in?

Are there unsolved problems known to be not independent of the axiomatic system it is proposed in? For example, is Goldbach's conjecture known to be provable using the axioms of PA? I believe I ...
2
votes
1answer
55 views

Benefit from measure theory

With your help I want to list the benefits from measure theory and the lebesgue integral. (Advantages to the Riemann integral) What I know: With the Lebesgue integral we need less requirements to ...
19
votes
11answers
1k views

What are some results that shook the foundations of one or more fields of mathematics? [closed]

An example would be the proof that $\sqrt{2}$ is not rational, which was a violation of some fundamental assumptions that mathematicians at the time made about numbers. Another would be Russell's ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Website for Mathematics enigmas?

I seek some website just for the pleasure of solving mathematics enigmas. I know this website : Brilliant.org I just want to know if you know some others good sites ! Thank you
69
votes
16answers
12k views

What is the smallest unknown natural number?

There are several unknown numbers in mathematics, such as optimal constants in some inequalities. Often it is enough to some estimates for these numbers from above and below, but finding the exact ...
8
votes
3answers
432 views

Space on which all real-valued continuous functions achieve maximum but not compact?

A friend is writing a book for non-mathematicians; he has asked me some questions... One possible direction I suggested was whether a topological space (metric space can probably be assumed given what ...
55
votes
15answers
2k views

What is the most unusual proof you know that $\sqrt{2}$ is irrational?

What is the most unusual proof you know that $\sqrt{2}$ is irrational? Here is my favorite: Theorem: $\sqrt{2}$ is irrational. Proof: $3^2-2\cdot 2^2 = 1$. (That's it) That is a ...
8
votes
1answer
194 views

What are some interesting blogs about general topology?

We have several question asking about book recommendations for general topology - for example the posts linked to Best book for topology? or the posts mentioned in the relevant section of List of ...
3
votes
0answers
146 views

Comprehensive Linear Algebra Text

Occasionally I come across a fact from linear algebra that I have not seen before. These facts are often obscured in search engines by either introductory texts or unrelated papers, and it is ...
13
votes
7answers
252 views

What are statements about the natural numbers where induction is impossible or unnecessary to prove?

I'm looking for statements like "for all natural numbers, ____" where induction would be impossible or unnecessarily complicated. This is for pedagogical reasons. When students first learn induction, ...
3
votes
1answer
309 views

Challenging problems in algebra (book recommendation) [closed]

Could you suggest me a book/web page where I can find challenging/hard problems in algebra (possibly with solutions) for an undergraduate student (groups, rings, fields, Galois theory)? Thanks in ...
5
votes
4answers
122 views

All possible total orderings of a finite set are isomorphic. What are some other examples of this phenomenon?

All possible total orderings of a finite set are isomorphic. I find these kinds of results remarkable. Here's a few more. Assume that $S$ is a finite set. Then: All possible field structures on $S$ ...
27
votes
5answers
1k views

Are there any nontrivial examples of contradictions arising in non-foundational or applied math due to naive set theory?

I understand that naive set theory, whose axioms are extensionality and unrestricted comprehension, is inconsistent, due to paradoxes like Russell, Curry, Cantor, and Burali-Forti. But these all ...