Erica Klarreich

Contributing Correspondent

geometry

Math Duo Maps the Infinite Terrain of Minimal Surfaces

March 12, 2019

A pair of mathematicians has built on an obscure, 30-year-old mathematical theory to show that soap-filmlike minimal surfaces appear abundantly in a wide range of shapes.

Photo of Tadashi Tokieda
Q&A

A Collector of Math and Physics Surprises

November 27, 2018

Tadashi Tokieda discovers new physical phenomena by looking at the everyday world with the eyes of a child.

combinatorics

Mystery Math Whiz and Novelist Advance Permutation Problem

November 5, 2018

A new proof from the Australian science fiction writer Greg Egan and a 2011 proof anonymously posted online are now being hailed as significant advances on a puzzle mathematicians have been studying for at least 25 years.

Photo of Urmila Mahadev
quantum computing

Graduate Student Solves Quantum Verification Problem

October 8, 2018

Urmila Mahadev spent eight years in graduate school solving one of the most basic questions in quantum computation: How do you know whether a quantum computer has done anything quantum at all?

Art for "Titans of Mathematics Clash Over Epic Proof of ABC Conjecture"
number theory

Titans of Mathematics Clash Over Epic Proof of ABC Conjecture

September 20, 2018

Two mathematicians have found what they say is a hole at the heart of a proof that has convulsed the mathematics community for nearly six years.

Photo illustration of Akshay Venkatesh
2018 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize

A Number Theorist Who Bridges Math and Time

August 1, 2018

Akshay Venkatesh, a former prodigy who struggled with the genius stereotype, has won a Fields Medal for his “profound contributions to an exceptionally broad range of subjects in mathematics.”

Photo illustration of Constantinos Daskalakis
2018 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize

A Poet of Computation Who Uncovers Distant Truths

August 1, 2018

The theoretical computer scientist Constantinos Daskalakis has won the Rolf Nevanlinna Prize for explicating core questions in game theory and machine learning.

Photo of Dr. Peter Scholze
2018 Fields Medal and Nevanlinna Prize

A Master of Numbers and Shapes Who Is Rewriting Arithmetic

August 1, 2018

The 30-year-old math sensation Peter Scholze is now one of the youngest Fields medalists for “the revolution that he launched in arithmetic geometry.”

Lede art for "First Big Steps Toward Proving the Unique Games Conjecture"
computational complexity

First Big Steps Toward Proving the Unique Games Conjecture

April 24, 2018

The latest in a new series of proofs brings theoretical computer scientists within striking distance of one of the great conjectures of their discipline.