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Mathematics

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A Mathematician Whose Only Constant Is Change

June 13, 2019

Amie Wilkinson searches for exotic examples of the mathematical structures that describe change.

Illustration of Fermat's Last Theorem
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Why the Proof of Fermat’s Last Theorem Doesn’t Need to Be Enhanced

June 3, 2019

Decades after the landmark proof of Fermat’s Last Theorem, ideas abound for how to make it even more reliable. But such efforts reflect a deep misunderstanding of what makes the proof so important.

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How Geometry, Data and Neighbors Predict Your Favorite Movies

May 22, 2019

A little high school geometry can help you understand the basic math behind movie recommendation engines.

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sphere packing

Out of a Magic Math Function, One Solution to Rule Them All

May 13, 2019

Mathematicians used “magic functions” to prove that two highly symmetric lattices solve a myriad of problems in eight- and 24-dimensional space.

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The Subtle Art of the Mathematical Conjecture

May 7, 2019

It’s an educated guess, not a proof. But a good conjecture will guide math forward, pointing the way into the mathematical unknown.

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mathematical physics

Universal Pattern Explains Why Materials Conduct

May 6, 2019

Mathematicians have found that materials conduct electricity when electrons follow a universal mathematical pattern.

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Abstractions blog

A New Approach to Multiplication Opens the Door to Better Quantum Computers

April 24, 2019

Quantum computers can’t selectively forget information. A new algorithm for multiplication shows a way around that problem.

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number theory

Mathematicians Discover the Perfect Way to Multiply

April 11, 2019

By chopping up large numbers into smaller ones, researchers have rewritten a fundamental mathematical speed limit.

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patterns

Scientists Discover Exotic New Patterns of Synchronization

April 4, 2019

In a world seemingly filled with chaos, physicists have discovered new forms of synchronization and are learning how to predict and control them.