Academic journal article et Cetera

Fermat's Enigma: The Epic Quest to Solve the World's Greatest Mathematical Problem

Academic journal article et Cetera

Fermat's Enigma: The Epic Quest to Solve the World's Greatest Mathematical Problem

Article excerpt

Simon Singh. Fermat's Enigma: The Epic Quest to Solve the World's Greatest Mathematical Problem. New York: Walker, 1997.

Pierre de Fermat, a seventeenth-century French judge who had a gift for math, inspired generations of mathematicians when he left a small note in the margin of a mathematical text. In it, he proclaimed he could prove that x" + yt = z" had no whole number solutions when "n" is greater than 2. This has become known as Fermat's last theorem and although it seems simple enough, the proof long evaded the greatest mathematical minds. No one has ever discovered Fermat's original proof (if it ever existed) and the theorem remained unsolved until 1993 when Andrew Wiles, a Princeton professor, stunned the international mathematics community when he announced that he had a proof.

This book details Wiles' incredible story from the time he first encountered the theorem as a child of ten, through seven years of solitary and secret toil on the proof, to his announcement of a solution which proves false, to his finally solving the problem a year later in a moment of inspiration.

And you will discover a variety of human interest stories involving other mathematicians who contributed to the eventual solution. …

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