Questions about mathematicians and their lives.

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7
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0answers
99 views

Who is “R. Drabek”?

The book "Algebra für Einsteiger" bei Bewersdorff (I think the English edition is called "Galois Theory for Beginners") starts with a nice quotation: Math is like love; a simple idea, but it can ...
0
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1answer
43 views

Independent Study

Aiming for a Pure Mathematics Degree. So I have currently completed 1.5 years at a junior college and have completed all of my lower division mathematics courses (i.e Single Variable Calculus, ...
0
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1answer
120 views

Who is a mathematician? [closed]

My first question in Math SE. Basically the question itself, who is a mathematician? Is it someone who solves problems on his leisure time or as a part of a job or even as a hobby? who researches ...
7
votes
1answer
109 views

Sources of morality in mathematics

Long ago, I have heard one of my mathematic teachers claim several times that a result, a conjecture should hold "moralement" in French ("morally" in English). Since then, I have heard the same ...
22
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11answers
4k views

Why is Lebesgue so often spelled “Lebesque”?

Henri Lebesgue (1875-1941) was a French mathematician, best known for inventing the theory of measure and integration that bears his name. As far as I know, "Lebesgue" is the correct spelling of his ...
1
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0answers
60 views

How to pronounce Serge Lang?

You could argue that this question belongs on a linguistic Stack Exchange; but not many people there are likely to know Serge Lang. And I would really like to know the answer. The question is: How did ...
-2
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2answers
35 views

Question on Groups [duplicate]

Give an example of an infinite group in which every element has a finite order
0
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3answers
34 views

Question on matrices

Let A be a symmetric matrix of form 2.2 then what should be the elements in matrix B of2.2 such that AB not equals to BA
6
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0answers
89 views

What did John Nash publish post-illness?

I've searched for this from time to time and never been able to find a single research paper he published since 1960. Every account of his later work seems to finesse this. The Abel prize page for ...
2
votes
1answer
166 views

Famous Problems the Experts Could not Solve [closed]

After Yitang Zhang stunned the mathematics world by establishing the first finite bound on gaps between prime numbers, it got me thinking about the following question: $\underline{\text{Question}}:$ ...
2
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0answers
78 views

How much math was “Broken” by Russell's Paradox?

As you know, the phrase "the set of all sets that don't contain themselves" caused a paradox that "broke" (made trivial) Naive set theory. How much mathematics had to be redone because of this? Most ...
3
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1answer
209 views

A joke proof of a famous mathematician showing that a certain two-digit number is prime

There was a joke (highly sophisticated, non-elementary) proof of a famous mathematician showing that a certain two-digit number (like 43 or 83 but I forgot what) is prime. Could you remind me of a ...
0
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3answers
218 views

How to pronounce “Sturm”? [closed]

The celebrated phrase "Sturm und Drang" is German. I know the pronunciation of the German noun "Sturm". But, I would like to pronounce the French name "Sturm" of "Jacques Charles François Sturm".
2
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0answers
99 views

Who First Considered This Generalization of the Fibonacci Numbers?

I am looking for the author who originally researched a generalization of the Fibonacci numbers, which Koshy, in Chapter 7 his book Fibonacci and Lucas Numbers with Application refers to as the ...
29
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7answers
5k views

Genius mathematicians who never published anything

Amongst philosophers, Socrates is an example of a genius with a great influence on human history who never wrote anything. Almost all facts which are known about his revolutionary ideas are written by ...
4
votes
1answer
208 views

Is there any mathematician who felt guilty for one of his math discoveries ever?

Quoted from Wikipedia: In 1888 Alfred Nobel's brother Ludvig died while visiting Cannes and a French newspaper erroneously published Alfred's obituary. It condemned him for his invention of ...
27
votes
11answers
4k views

Great contributions to mathematics by older mathematicians [closed]

It is often said that mathematicians hit their prime in their twenties, and some even say that no great mathematics is created after that age, or that older mathematicians have their best days behind ...
44
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14answers
4k views

Largest “leap-to-generality” in math history?

Grothendieck, who is famous inter alia for his capacity/tendency to look for the most general formulation of a problem, introduced a number of new concepts (with topos maybe the most famous ?) that ...
14
votes
2answers
448 views

What is the most influential work of Grothendieck in mathematics?

Recently Alexander Grothendieck has passed away but his mathematical wave is still alive and passes its growth ages. It is hard to describe the influence of such a great man in mathematics just in few ...
20
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2answers
378 views

How can a beginner researcher or Ph.D. student efficiently and effectively learn new concepts while staying motivated?

I hope this question is appropriate for MSE. The situation is that someone is reading a book (e.g. a monograph), possibly helpful in his/her research, and the content is sufficiently extensive or ...
19
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4answers
717 views

Was there anybody before Cantor who conjectured existence of infinities of different sizes?

Georg Cantor is formally known as the first one who discovered existence of infinities of different sizes. But the history of thinking about the concept of "infinity" in maths and philosophy goes back ...
126
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22answers
18k views

Examples of mathematical discoveries which were kept as a secret

There could be several personal, social, philosophical and even political reasons to keep a mathematical discovery as a secret. For example it is completely expected that if some mathematician find ...
6
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4answers
364 views

Good books written by great mathematicians

I read many of Richard Fenynman's books and I found them both very entertaining and moving, showing the human side of a brilliant scientific mind. I recently read also a collection of P.A.M. Dirac's ...
37
votes
1answer
881 views

What did mathematicians study as an undergraduate/graduate before modern mathematics such as modern algebra and analysis?

I am curious as to what mathematicians such as Leibnitz and Gauss and the Bernoulli's studied when they were students in university. I find it fascinating how we are taught calculus and abstract ...
4
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2answers
155 views

What happens to a great mathematician's unpublished works when they die?

When a great mathematician dies, they often leave plenty of unpublished and incomplete works in their manuscripts. As we assumed that they were a really good mathematician, most of the ideas in these ...
1
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0answers
140 views

Any other mathematicians like Galois in recent history?

Any other mathematicians like Galois in recent history ? For "someone like Galois", I mean someone who developed a completely new theory all by himself, solved a big problem and the theory has big ...
22
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5answers
873 views

Who are some blind or otherwise disabled mathematicians who have made important contributions to mathematics?

Two prominent mathematicians who were disabled in ways which would have made it difficult to work were Lev Pontryagin and Solomon Lefschetz. Pontryagin was blind as a result of a stove explosion at ...
1
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4answers
222 views

Why didn't Fermat provide proofs of his theorems?

Apparently Fermat stated but didn't provide proofs of various theorems named after him, including Fermat's little theorem, Fermat's theorem on sums of two squares, Fertmat's polygonal number theorem, ...
42
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5answers
7k views

What are the work habits of the best mathematicians? [closed]

Of course I would never compare myself to, and don't expect to be, one of the great mathematicians. However, I am curious as to how my work habits, dedication and passion differs from theirs. How ...
0
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1answer
57 views

Reference Request: Nicole Oresme history

It says on Wikipedia that [Nicole Oresme] also worked on fractional powers, and the notion of probability over infinite sequences, ideas which would not be further developed for the next three and ...
2
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0answers
165 views

How mathematical theorems and concepts gain their names?

Cantor's theorem, Woodin Cardinal, Sacks Forcing and Martin's Axiom are just some of well-known theorems and concepts of mathematics which have the name of those mathematicians who introduced these ...
71
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24answers
12k views

Mathematicians ahead of their time?

In every field there's always that person who's just years ahead of their time. For instance, Paul Morphy (born 1837) is said to have retired from chess because he found no one to match his technique ...
1
vote
1answer
79 views

Arthur Milgram photo

someone has photo of Arthur Milgram? (the guy from Lax-Milgram Theorem) I'm curious, why I can't find one picture of Arthur Milgram on google? Anyone has one? or where can I find one? Thanks!
29
votes
14answers
10k views

I'm a teenager hoping to become a mathematician, but math isn't my forte. Is it possible? [duplicate]

I am a sophomore in high school and have discovered the joys of mathematics. However,due to sheer irony, at times I find the subject difficult. I am what one could label "lopsided" in my faculties, ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

Which mathematician has argued that we should move from “set” to “order”?

I recall reading (on this very site, in fact) that there is a mathematician whom argues that we ought to switch from "set" to "order" in the foundations, so as to "recover duality" or some such. Does ...
14
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1answer
7k views

Dantzig's unsolved homework problems

From Wikipedia: An event in George Dantzig's life became the origin of a famous story in 1939 while he was a graduate student at UC Berkeley. Near the beginning of a class for which Dantzig ...
11
votes
9answers
1k views

Mathematicians talking about their identity as a person and as a mathematician? [closed]

I was wondering if any of you know of any books, articles, interviews, youtube videos, ... (etc) where a mathematician talks about his or her identity as a person and as a mathematician? Thank you for ...
5
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3answers
315 views

CINEMA : Mathematicians

I know that a similar question has been asked about mathematics documentaries in general, but I would like some recommendations on films specifically about various mathematicians (male and or female). ...
4
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2answers
204 views

Photograph of Marjorie Rice

I'm giving a presentation this weekend about Marjorie Rice's work on tilings. The only photograph I have of her (from her website) is small and pixelated, and I haven't been able to make contact with ...
0
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2answers
76 views

Is there a book or a list online where Fermat's conjectures are compiled?

I heard/ read somewhere that "Fermat's last theorem" is named as such because it is "Fermat's last conjecture to be disposed of." This got me interested in knowing what Fermat's other conjectures are. ...
2
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2answers
381 views

Leonhard Euler phd?

"In 1723, received his Master of Philosophy with a dissertation that compared the philosophies of Descartes and Newton. At this time, he was receiving Saturday afternoon lessons from Johann Bernoulli, ...
7
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1answer
229 views

pronunciation of “Kunen” [closed]

How should the last name of set theorist Ken Kunen be pronounced? I have heard both koo-nen and kyoo-nen from other people. Probably the best answer would be to say how he himself pronounces it, but ...
9
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5answers
2k views

Mathematics, Philosophy and writing.

Do you know of any famous mathematicians who were also philosophers? I have heard of Descartes, Plato and Leibniz. Are there other good examples, especially more modern examples? Also welcome are ...
9
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3answers
371 views

Links to Online Videos of Good-Quality Lectures by Mathematicians

I am not trying to do anything new here, but I would like to start an activity that has been going on at Math Overflow. Hopefully, people here at the Math StackExchange can also enjoy the good stuff. ...
4
votes
1answer
227 views

Who is “Euclide Paracelso Bombasto Umbugio”?

I just browsed through the book Foundations of Algebra and Analysis by C. Dodge, which contains a very short biography of a very famous mathematician at the beginning of each chapter, together with ...
20
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1answer
503 views

Who was Hermann Künneth?

Question as in the title: Who was Hermann Künneth? Where can I find some biographical information beyond what is available on Wikipedia? The well-known Künneth formula, for example in the form of ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Mathematics celebrities that every mathematician should know? [closed]

As a mathematician, sometimes I meet across very embarrassing questions which were posted by who does not learn of mathematics, for example, my wife and so on. She or he always posted such questions: ...
27
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4answers
2k views

Examples of mathematicians who lost interest in Math and got interested again?

I am looking for some examples, and hopefully some short biographies on mathematicians who lost interest in Math along the way, and somehow got rejuvenated again. (Better still, who managed to do ...
4
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3answers
671 views

Sheffer stroke the most important advance in logic?

I think I once read, or heard, that Bertrand Russell once said that the discovery that all logical operators are expressible in terms of the Sheffer stroke was the most significant advance in logic ...
8
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2answers
503 views

Unpublished Discoveries by Gauss that Were Later Rediscovered and Attributed to Other Mathematicians

Karl Friedrich Gauss made many discoveries that he did not publish and that remained unknown until later mathematicians (re)discovered them. When Gauss's personal notebooks were later examined, it ...