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**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

You want to run through the streets naked shouting, "eureka?"

I do not suggest that.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

**I agree with you regarding the satisfaction and importance of actually computing some numbers. I can't tell you how often I see time and money wasted because someone didn't bother to run the numbers.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

Okay, an Andrew Wiles FLT moment.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

I saw the documentary, he openly wept like a little girl. I do not suggest that either.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

**I agree with you regarding the satisfaction and importance of actually computing some numbers. I can't tell you how often I see time and money wasted because someone didn't bother to run the numbers.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

Really? I did not know that. I don't remember hearing that in the documentary...

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

Which one did you watch?

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

**I agree with you regarding the satisfaction and importance of actually computing some numbers. I can't tell you how often I see time and money wasted because someone didn't bother to run the numbers.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

The one where they play the piano instrumental of Perpetuum Mobile while he writes some stuff about Galois representations. I think it is an hour long.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

The Nova? That is the one where he sobs even remembering it.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

I think I remember that. Then again, if he spent his whole life on it, I would probably sob too.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

It is okay, he already did it. You must find something new, something unique.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

Every time I think I find something new or unique it has already been discovered. I remember a few years ago I discovered how to find fractional and complex derivatives (e.g. (1+i)th derivative of f(x)), by toying with the gamma function. Then I looked this up, and fractional calculus had already been invented. I don't believe they found a use for complex derivatives though. I did some up with some ideas (like an infinite series of derivatives on some function -- e.g. (1/2)th derivative, followed by (1/4)th derivative, (1/8)th derivative, ... would lead to the 1st derivative, if you had the differentiation operator D tend to infinity). But I could not find anything about that. Everything I find, oh look, some guy already found it.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

So. The thrill of discovery is for you alone. I remember similar incidents. I was toying around with minimax approximations for a large set of discrete data. Using matrix algebra and overdetermined systems I was able to compute them. I was so excited over it I did not tell anyone and used it in my work again and again. I smirked everytime I got an answer and my rivals did not. Then I happened to pick up a new book and saw that my method was already done by a guy named Remez. Also he had an improvement that made his better than mine.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

Yes, I felt the same way. I kept my work secret too. It feels good when you feel like you have stepped into uncharted waters. Do you think it is more difficult to find something new in the modern mathematical era since so many things have already been discovered, or is it easier since there are more branches of mathematics than there were say 400 years ago?

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

Heard about the two 15 year old kids some years back?

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

No, I heard about one that went to Cambridge at 15 though.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

These two kids discovered a theorem in geometry that Euclid and all the mathematicians after him had missed. There are more unanswered questions in mathematics today then there ever was.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

What was the theorem? Was it one that was surprisingly simple?

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

Yes, it was very simple. I taped it off the news. It was only a 15 minute interview. Unfortunately I do not remember it offhand. I will look for it.

I am going to eat. see you tomorrow.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

Thanks.

I talked to my head of year today about my uni application. He said that the chance of me getting at least an interview at Churchill College is 100%, which was good to hear. It is great, they provide you with free bed and breakfast on the night after the aptitude test too (they require you to stay overnight for the interviews the following day). Still have to sort out some technicalities on my personal statement though...

I saw Anna today but I don't think she recognised me. That is about it.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

Did you walk up to her and say, "Hi, we met on such and such a day?"

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

She was surrounded by a group of guys. It was probably not a good time.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

Why not just bulldog your way right through them? It would drive her crazy with desire.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

No, the competition was too fierce today. I would have been roasted.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

The strength of ten would have been in your arms. You would have snapped their backs as if they were potato chips.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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**zetafunc.****Guest**

I think the opposite would have happened. She was literally being swarmed with guys. I must use the tactic of divide and conquer.

**bobbym****Administrator**- From: Bumpkinland
- Registered: 2009-04-12
- Posts: 90,879

You could have used a smoke bomb. Or a cluster bomb. Maybe even a hand grenade.

**In mathematics, you don't understand things. You just get used to them.**

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