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Norbert Wiener: The Eccentric Genius Whose Time May Have Finally Come (Again) - "The most direct reason for Wiener's fall to relative obscurity was the breakthrough of a young mathematician and engineer named Claude Shannon." [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Jul 11, 2014 - 12 comments

posted by kliuless on Jul 11, 2014 - 12 comments

Scott Aaronson on building a 'PageRank' for (eigen)morality and (eigen)trust - "Now, would those with axes to grind try to subvert such a system the instant it went online? Certainly. For example, I assume that millions of people would rate Conservapedia as a more trustworthy source than Wikipedia—and would rate other people who had done so as, themselves, trustworthy sources, while rating as untrustworthy anyone who called Conservapedia untrustworthy. So there would arise a parallel world of trust and consensus and 'expertise', mutually-reinforcing yet nearly disjoint from the world of the real. But here's the thing: *anyone would be able to see, with the click of a mouse, the extent to which this parallel world had diverged from the real one*." [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Jun 23, 2014 - 45 comments

posted by kliuless on Jun 23, 2014 - 45 comments

Computers are providing solutions to math problems that we can't check - "A computer has solved the longstanding Erdős discrepancy problem! Trouble is, we have no idea what it's talking about — because the solution, which is as long as all of Wikipedia's pages combined, is far too voluminous for us puny humans to confirm." (via; previously ;)

posted by kliuless on Apr 12, 2014 - 24 comments

posted by kliuless on Apr 12, 2014 - 24 comments

Finite time blowup for an averaged three-dimensional Navier-Stokes equation - "[Terence Tao] has shown that in an alternative abstract universe closely related to the one described by the Navier-Stokes equations, it is possible for a body of fluid to form a sort of computer, which can build a self-replicating fluid robot that, like the Cat in the Hat, keeps transferring its energy to smaller and smaller copies of itself until the fluid 'blows up.' " [1,2,3] (previously)

posted by kliuless on Mar 9, 2014 - 15 comments

posted by kliuless on Mar 9, 2014 - 15 comments

Network Theory Overview - "The idea: nature and the world of human technology are full of networks! People like to draw diagrams of networks. Mathematical physicists know that in principle these diagrams can be understood using category theory. But why should physicists have all the fun? This is the century of *understanding living systems and adapting to life on a finite planet*. Math isn't the main thing we need, but it's got to be part of the solution... so one thing we should do is develop a unified and powerful theory of networks." (via ;)

posted by kliuless on Mar 2, 2014 - 17 comments

posted by kliuless on Mar 2, 2014 - 17 comments

Closing in on the twin prime conjecture (Quanta) - "Just months after Zhang announced his result, Maynard has presented an independent proof that pushes the gap down to 600. A new Polymath project is in the planning stages, to try to combine the collaboration's techniques with Maynard's approach to push this bound even lower." [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Dec 1, 2013 - 16 comments

posted by kliuless on Dec 1, 2013 - 16 comments

Using computer systems for doing mathematical proofs - "With the proliferation of computer-assisted proofs that are all but impossible to check by hand, Hales thinks computers must become the judge." [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Mar 16, 2013 - 25 comments

posted by kliuless on Mar 16, 2013 - 25 comments

The Nature of Computation - Intellects Vast and Warm and Sympathetic: "I hand you a network or graph, and ask whether there is a path through the network that crosses each edge exactly once, returning to its starting point. (That is, I ask whether there is a 'Eulerian' cycle.) Then I hand you another network, and ask whether there is a path which visits each node exactly once. (That is, I ask whether there is a 'Hamiltonian' cycle.) How hard is it to answer me?" (via) [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Dec 1, 2012 - 19 comments

posted by kliuless on Dec 1, 2012 - 19 comments

Morton and Vicary on the Categorified Heisenberg Algebra - "In quantum mechanics, position times momentum does not equal momentum times position! This sounds weird, but it's connected to a very simple fact. Suppose you have a box with some balls in it, and you have the magical ability to create and annihilate balls. Then there's one more way to create a ball and then annihilate one, than to annihilate one and then create one. Huh? Yes: if there are, say, 3 balls in the box to start with, there are 4 balls you can choose to annihilate after you've created one but only 3 before you create one..." [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Jul 21, 2012 - 78 comments

posted by kliuless on Jul 21, 2012 - 78 comments

Salman Khan: The Messiah of Math - "His free website, dubbed the Khan Academy, may well be the most popular educational site in the world. Last month about 2 million students visited. MIT's OpenCourseWare site, by comparison, has been around since 2001 and averages 1 million visits each month... [more inside]

posted by kliuless on May 28, 2011 - 150 comments

posted by kliuless on May 28, 2011 - 150 comments

New math theories reveal the nature of numbers [1,2] - "We prove that partition numbers are 'fractal' for every prime. These numbers, in a way we make precise, are self-similar in a shocking way. Our 'zooming' procedure resolves several open conjectures, and it will change how mathematicians study partitions." (/.|via) [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Jan 22, 2011 - 45 comments

posted by kliuless on Jan 22, 2011 - 45 comments

A brief tour of the mysteriously universal laws of mathematics and nature. [more inside]

posted by kliuless on Oct 24, 2010 - 33 comments

posted by kliuless on Oct 24, 2010 - 33 comments

The Status of the P Versus NP Problem *It's one of the fundamental mathematical problems of our time, and its importance grows with the rise of powerful computers.* (via mr)

posted by kliuless on Aug 27, 2009 - 116 comments

posted by kliuless on Aug 27, 2009 - 116 comments

The Free Will Theorem - "If there exist experimenters with (some) free will, then elementary particles also have (some) free will." (previously)

posted by kliuless on Jun 28, 2009 - 229 comments

posted by kliuless on Jun 28, 2009 - 229 comments

Stephen Wolfram discusses Wolfram|Alpha: Computational Knowledge Engine - at the same time Google Adds Search to Public Data, viz: "Nobody really paid attention to the two hour snorecast" -- like a cross between designing for big data and a glossary of game theory terms -- on Wolfram|Alpha (previously), yet the veil is being lifted nonetheless: "[on] a platonic search engine, unearthing eternal truths that may never have been written down before," cf. hunch & cyc (and in other startup news...) [via] [more inside]

posted by kliuless on May 1, 2009 - 29 comments

posted by kliuless on May 1, 2009 - 29 comments

Correlative Analytics -- or as O'Reilly might term the Social Graph -- sort of mirrors the debate on 'brute force' algorithmic proofs (that are "true for no reason," cf.) in which "computers can extract patterns in this ocean of data that no human could ever possibly detect. These patterns are correlations. They may or may not be causative, but we can learn new things. Therefore they accomplish what science does, although not in the traditional manner... In this part of science, we may get answers that work, but which we don't understand. Is this partial understanding? Or a different kind of understanding?" Of course, say some in the scientific community: hogwash; it's just a fabrication of scientifically/statistically illiterate pundits, like whilst new techniques in data analysis are being developed to help keep ahead of the deluge...

posted by kliuless on Jul 21, 2008 - 40 comments

posted by kliuless on Jul 21, 2008 - 40 comments

Grisha Perelman, where are you? Perelman has quite possibly solved one of mathematics biggest mysteries, Poincaré’s conjecture, but has since disappeared.

posted by kliuless on Aug 15, 2006 - 32 comments

posted by kliuless on Aug 15, 2006 - 32 comments

The Logic of Diversity "A new book, *The Wisdom of Crowds* [..:] by The New Yorker columnist James Surowiecki, has recently popularized the idea that groups can, in some ways, be smarter than their members, which is superficially similar to Page's results. While Surowiecki gives many examples of what one might call collective cognition, where groups out-perform isolated individuals, he really has only one explanation for this phenomenon, based on one of his examples: jelly beans [...] averaging together many independent, unbiased guesses gives a result that is probably closer to the truth than any one guess. While true — it's the central limit theorem of statistics — it's far from being the only way in which diversity can be beneficial in problem solving." (Three-Toed Sloth)

posted by kliuless on Jun 20, 2005 - 6 comments

posted by kliuless on Jun 20, 2005 - 6 comments

The Shapes of Space [note : *pdf, sciam, poincaré conjecture*]

posted by kliuless on Aug 1, 2004 - 4 comments

posted by kliuless on Aug 1, 2004 - 4 comments

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