mersenneforum.org  

Go Back   mersenneforum.org > Extra Stuff > Miscellaneous Math

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 2008-06-11, 16:38   #12
ewmayer
2ω=0
 
ewmayer's Avatar
 
Sep 2002
Repรบblica de California

2·3·1,931 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carl Fischbach View Post
I am not really sure of myself with complex math but I thought I would give Riemann's hypothesis a shot
Full stop.
ewmayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-11, 17:08   #13
jasonp
Tribal Bullet
 
jasonp's Avatar
 
Oct 2004

DCE16 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
What is it about mathematics that people who are totally ignorant
(and who know they are ignorant) think they can magically solve
problems that have eluded PhD's for centuries??? We see this phenomenon
constantly on the Internet.
I've thought about this a lot, and I think it boils down to three things:

- complex questions have complex answers, so therefore simple questions must have simple answers

- mathematics is an edifice of pure thought-stuff, and not a 'trade' like neurosurgery, so the cost of entry is perceived as zero

- Fame is nice, and finding that simple answer will make me famous

Compare Wiles' proof of Fermat's Last Theorem (available as a PDF from the relevant wikipedia page) to the average (attempt at an) algebraic proof. I've heard that the number of purported proofs of FLT actually increased after Wiles' result was published.
jasonp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-11, 18:01   #14
R.D. Silverman
 
R.D. Silverman's Avatar
 
Nov 2003

22×5×373 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonp View Post

- Fame is nice, and finding that simple answer will make me famous
Yes. But getting a reputation as being a fool is not nice....

The most amazing thing to me is the hubris implied by someone even *trying*
to give a simple proof. What makes these people think that they can
find a simple answer that has eluded so many experts for so long???

Last fiddled with by R.D. Silverman on 2008-06-11 at 18:03 Reason: My deletion of text deleted the '/'
R.D. Silverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-11, 18:37   #15
jasonp
Tribal Bullet
 
jasonp's Avatar
 
Oct 2004

2·3·19·31 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
The most amazing thing to me is the hubris implied by someone even *trying*
to give a simple proof. What makes these people think that they can
find a simple answer that has eluded so many experts for so long???
Distrust of authority is ordinarily healthy...though of course the burden is on you (always) to not be wrong
jasonp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-11, 20:41   #16
xilman
Bamboozled!
 
xilman's Avatar
 
"๐’‰บ๐’ŒŒ๐’‡ท๐’†ท๐’€ญ"
May 2003
Down not across

2·3·1,753 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonp View Post
I've thought about this a lot, and I think it boils down to three things:

- complex questions have complex answers, so therefore simple questions must have simple answers

- mathematics is an edifice of pure thought-stuff, and not a 'trade' like neurosurgery, so the cost of entry is perceived as zero

- Fame is nice, and finding that simple answer will make me famous

Compare Wiles' proof of Fermat's Last Theorem (available as a PDF from the relevant wikipedia page) to the average (attempt at an) algebraic proof. I've heard that the number of purported proofs of FLT actually increased after Wiles' result was published.
It was a rhetorical question. Bob's asked it many times in the past and has had several good answers. I refuse to believe that he's forgotten all of them and needs to ask again.

One of my responses is that almost everyone in the overdeveloped world has received an education in mathematics but hardly anyone has had any education in surgery. Therefore, people are more confident in the former than the latter.

(The counter-argument, which hardly anyone produces, so I'm revealing it as a public service, is that "medicine", not "surgery" is a closer match to "mathematics" and that almost everyone has some exposure to basic medicine as a recipient and as a practitioner.)

Paul
xilman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-12, 11:28   #17
jasonp
Tribal Bullet
 
jasonp's Avatar
 
Oct 2004

2×3×19×31 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
It was a rhetorical question. Bob's asked it many times in the past and has had several good answers. I refuse to believe that he's forgotten all of them and needs to ask again.
My answer was rhetorical too :)
jasonp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-12, 11:58   #18
Visu
 
Visu's Avatar
 
Nov 2006
Singapore

10010112 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonp View Post
I've thought about this a lot, and I think it boils down to three things:

- complex questions have complex answers, so therefore simple questions must have simple answers

- mathematics is an edifice of pure thought-stuff, and not a 'trade' like neurosurgery, so the cost of entry is perceived as zero

- Fame is nice, and finding that simple answer will make me famous

Compare Wiles' proof of Fermat's Last Theorem (available as a PDF from the relevant wikipedia page) to the average (attempt at an) algebraic proof. I've heard that the number of purported proofs of FLT actually increased after Wiles' result was published.
Just curious, how many people on this forum actually understand Wiles' proof of FLT? (Especially those with a background in mathematics).
Visu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-12, 12:44   #19
R.D. Silverman
 
R.D. Silverman's Avatar
 
Nov 2003

746010 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Visu View Post
Just curious, how many people on this forum actually understand Wiles' proof of FLT? (Especially those with a background in mathematics).
Completely? I doubt anyone does. I understand some of the pieces.
R.D. Silverman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-12, 14:00   #20
Visu
 
Visu's Avatar
 
Nov 2006
Singapore

3·52 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by R.D. Silverman View Post
Completely? I doubt anyone does. I understand some of the pieces.
That probably explains the reason why people look for simpler proofs. I remember reading somewhere ( I think it was in Simon Singh's book on FLT) that only 5 people in the world understand Wiles' proof completely. I could find 5 ( or more) people who believe in UFO's , tooth fairies and the Loch Ness monster but that doesn't mean they exist.

Don't get me wrong I'm not saying that Wiles' proof is wrong.I'm just pointing out that a simpler proof is more accessible and more people will be convinced of its truth. That's why we have people still coming up with proofs to FLT but no one attempting to disprove Pythagoras' theorem.
Visu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-12, 23:58   #21
Orgasmic Troll
Cranksta Rap Ayatollah
 
Orgasmic Troll's Avatar
 
Jul 2003

28116 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Visu View Post
That probably explains the reason why people look for simpler proofs. I remember reading somewhere ( I think it was in Simon Singh's book on FLT) that only 5 people in the world understand Wiles' proof completely. I could find 5 ( or more) people who believe in UFO's , tooth fairies and the Loch Ness monster but that doesn't mean they exist.

Don't get me wrong I'm not saying that Wiles' proof is wrong.I'm just pointing out that a simpler proof is more accessible and more people will be convinced of its truth. That's why we have people still coming up with proofs to FLT but no one attempting to disprove Pythagoras' theorem.
Why are you pointing it out? That's completely obvious and doesn't discount the hubris of cranks who think that THEY can provide a simple proof of FLT despite the fact that the problem resisted for hundreds of years and only fell due to some VERY deep mathematics. It's downright insulting.
Orgasmic Troll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-06-13, 01:04   #22
Visu
 
Visu's Avatar
 
Nov 2006
Singapore

3×52 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonp View Post
- mathematics is an edifice of pure thought-stuff, and not a 'trade' like neurosurgery, so the cost of entry is perceived as zero
You don't kill anyone doing mathematics unlike brain surgery so there is no liability in being a crank.(except being called on of course.)
Visu is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hello, who could be able to endorse me so that I can publish on arxiv about Riemann Hypothesis? magox Math 12 2016-07-07 03:01
Connection to the Riemann's hypothesis kurtulmehtap Math 17 2009-10-17 15:40
The Riemann Hypothesis at 150 ewmayer Math 0 2009-10-09 16:50
Riemann Hypothesis according to Bearnol bearnol Miscellaneous Math 20 2006-08-01 14:08
Riemann Hypothesis is false????? georgekh Miscellaneous Math 3 2004-12-02 18:45

All times are UTC. The time now is 01:21.

Tue Jan 26 01:21:09 UTC 2021 up 53 days, 21:32, 0 users, load averages: 1.78, 1.78, 1.80

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum has received and complied with 0 (zero) government requests for information.

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation.
A copy of the license is included in the FAQ.