## Latest Articles

### Google Researcher, Long Out of Math, Cracks Problem About Sets

On nights and weekends, Justin Gilmer attacked an old question in pure math using the tools of information theory.

### The Brain Uses Calculus to Control Fast Movements

Researchers discover that to sharpen its control over precision maneuvers, the brain uses comparisons between control signals — not the signals themselves.

### How Shannon Entropy Imposes Fundamental Limits on Communication

What’s a message, really? Claude Shannon recognized that the elemental ingredient is surprise.

### A Question About a Rotating Line Helps Reveal What Makes Real Numbers Special

The Kakeya conjecture predicts how much room you need to point a line in every direction. In one number system after another — with one important exception — mathematicians have been proving it true.

### Special Surfaces Remain Distinct in Four Dimensions

For decades mathematicians have searched for a specific pair of surfaces that can’t be transformed into each other in four-dimensional space. Now they’ve found them.

### Mathematicians Clear Hurdle in Quest to Decode Primes

Paul Nelson has solved the subconvexity problem, bringing mathematicians one step closer to understanding the Riemann hypothesis and the distribution of prime numbers.

### How Tadayuki Watanabe Disproved a Major Conjecture About Spheres

Watanabe invented a new way of distinguishing shapes on his way to solving the last open case of the Smale conjecture, a central question in topology about symmetries of the sphere.

### In Topology, When Are Two Shapes the Same?

As topologists seek to classify shapes, the effort hinges on how to define a manifold and what it means for two of them to be equivalent.

### New Math Book Rescues Landmark Topology Proof

Michael Freedman’s momentous 1981 proof of the four-dimensional Poincaré conjecture was on the verge of being lost. The editors of a new book are trying to save it.