Top links for Mathematics #1
N Is a Number: A Portrait of Paul Erdős
Paul Erdős (26 March 1913 — 20 September 1996) was a Hungarian mathematician. Erdős published more papers than any other mathematician in history, working with hundreds of collaborators. He worked on problems in combinatorics, graph theory, number theory, classical analysis, approximation theory, set theory, and probability theory. He is also known for his “legendarily eccentric” personality.
The Story of Maths
Marcus du Sautoy’s The Story of Maths is a total of four hours attempting to give an overview of the history of mathematics from ancient to modern time, spending 5-10 minutes each on the life and work of some of the most famous mathematicians. While one could quibble with some of the selections, the project is overall a fantastic production.
ermat’s Last Theorem
At the age of ten, browsing through his public library, Andrew Wiles stumbled across the world’s greatest mathematical puzzle. Fermat’s Last Theorem had baffled mathematicians for over 300 years. But from that day, little Andrew dreamed of solving it. Tonight’s HORIZON tells the story of his obsession, and how, thirty years later, he gave up everything to achieve his childhood dream. eep in our classroom memories lies the enduring notion that “the square of the hypotenuse is equal to the sum of the squares of the other two sides”: Pythagoras’s Theorem for right-angled triangles. Written down, it is also the simplest of mathematical equations: x^ 2+ y^2 = z^2
Alan Turing: Codebreaker and AI Pioneer
The code-breaking work at Bletchley Park, which helped save Britain from Nazi Germany, qualifies as one of the greatest stories of World War II, and the misunderstood genius, Alan Turing, stands at the center of this tale. Perhaps no one understands Turing’s role during this period — and his larger impact on mathematics and computing — like B. Jack Copeland. In this lecture, Copeland contends that Turing should be celebrated as the father of artificial intelligence.
In this one-off documentary, David Malone looks at four brilliant mathematicians - Georg Cantor, Ludwig Boltzmann, Kurt Gödel and Alan Turing - whose genius has profoundly affected us, but which tragically drove them insane and eventually led to them all committing suicide. The film also talks to the latest in the line of thinkers who have continued to pursue the question of whether there are things that mathematics and the human mind cannot know. They include Greg Chaitin, mathematician at the IBM TJ Watson Research Center, New York, and Roger Penrose. Dangerous Knowledge tackles some of the profound questions about the true nature of reality that mathematical thinkers are still trying to answer today.
Taking the Long View: The Life of Shiing-shen Chern
The Life of Shiing-shen Chern (2010) examines the life of a remarkable mathematician whose formidable mathematical contributions were matched by an approach and vision that helped build bridges between China and the West. Shiing-shen Chern is portrayed as a man who dedicated his life to pure mathematics with the style of a classical Chinese sage.
The Simons Foundation presents a series of extended interviews with some of the giants of 20th-century mathematics and science. This collection, organized in collaboration with Hugo Rossi of the University of Utah, provides an opportunity to watch these great men and women discuss their lives and their thinking about science and our world.
The Memoirs and Legacy of Évariste Galois
Évariste Galois was born 200 years ago and died aged 20, shot in a mysterious early-morning duel in 1832. He left contributions to the theory of equations that changed the direction of mathematics and led directly to what is now broadly described as ‘modern’ or ‘abstract’ algebra. In this lecture, designed for a general audience, Dr Peter Neumann will explain Galois’ discoveries and place them in their historical context. Little knowledge of mathematics is assumed - the only prerequisite is sympathy for mathematics and its history.
Achieving the Unachievable
It features many mathematicians discussing M.C. Escher’s Print Gallery
John Forbes Nash (A Brilliant Madness)
A Brilliant Madness is the story of a mathematical genius whose career was cut short by a descent into madness. At the age of 30, John Nash, a stunningly original and famously eccentric MIT mathematician, suddenly began claiming that aliens were communicating with him and that he was a special messenger. Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, Nash spent the next three decades in and out of mental hospitals, all but forgotten. During that time, a proof he had written at the age of 20 became a foundation of modern economic theory. In 1994, as Nash began to show signs of emerging from his delusions, he was awarded a Nobel Prize in Economics.
Some ACE Talks from CMI