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Poincare solved?

A year ago I blogged about the Clay Mathematics Institute and its million dollar prize for solving one of seven longstanding problems. One of those problems is the Poincare Conjecture, which is a statement about how shapes and surfaces can be classified. Today, Tiffany handed me an article from Science magazine (not available online to a non-AAAS member such as myself) which states that a Russian mathematician named Grigory Perelman may have solved it. Here’s an statement of the conjecture and how Ricci intends to solve it. For a mathophile like me, this is nearly as big as Andrew Wiles’ recent conquest of the Fermat Theorem.

What makes this even cooler is that Perelman’s work stems from a groundbreaking idea of William Thurston, who recently commented on this Calpundit post about math education. You get all of the best comments, Kevin!

Anyway, Perelman has a ways to go before claiming his million. The conditions of the prize say that the proof has to have been reviewed for two years first. So stay tuned.

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3 Comments

  1. Poincare solved?

    Off the Kuff: Poincare solved? bq. A year ago I blogged about the Clay Mathematics Institute and its million dollar prize for solving one of seven longstanding problems. One of those problems is the Poincare Conjecture, which is a statement about how s…

  2. alkali says:

    If it makes you feel any better, I won’t disabuse you of the remote possibility that I am a Nobel laureate.

  3. […] Perelman, the reclusive Russian mathematician who solved the Poincare Conjecture in 2003 has officially been awarded the one million dollar Clay Mathematics Prize for doing so. The prize […]