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Mathematics

Abstractions blog

Air Traffic Control for Random Surfaces

Mathematicians have had a hard time finding commonalities in large groups of random shapes — until recently.

Q&A

Moonshine Master Toys With String Theory

The physicist-mathematician Miranda Cheng is working to harness a mysterious connection between string theory, algebra and number theory.

geometry

A Unified Theory of Randomness

Researchers have uncovered deep connections among different types of random objects, illuminating hidden geometric structures.

universality

A Bird’s-Eye View of Nature’s Hidden Order

Scientists are exploring a mysterious pattern, found in birds’ eyes, boxes of marbles and other surprising places, that is neither regular nor random.

Abstractions blog

Handicapping the 2018 Fields Medal

Peter Scholze is a favorite to win one of the highest honors in mathematics for his contributions in number theory and geometry.

profile

The Oracle of Arithmetic

At 28, Peter Scholze is uncovering deep connections between number theory and geometry.

combinatorics

Simple Set Game Proof Stuns Mathematicians

A new series of papers has settled a long-standing question related to the popular game in which players seek patterned sets of three cards.

foundations of mathematics

Mathematicians Bridge Finite-Infinite Divide

A surprising new proof is helping to connect the mathematics of infinity to the physical world.

The mathematician Ken Ono in his office at Emory University in Atlanta.
Q&A

A Life Inspired by an Unexpected Genius

Greatness was always expected of Ken Ono. But as he struggled with his parents’ expectations, he found solace and inspiration in the life of two-time college dropout — and mathematical genius — Srinivasa Ramanujan, the subject of the film The Man Who Knew Infinity.