Magazine article Times Higher Education

Scholar's Paper Doesn't Add Up

Magazine article Times Higher Education

Scholar's Paper Doesn't Add Up

Article excerpt

'No scientific content' the sticking point as second mathematics treatise is retracted. Paul Jump writes.

An Indian mathematician who had a journal article retracted last year over its claims that mathematics and spirituality both "came from space" has seen another of his publications suffer a similar fate for having "no scientific content".

The Elsevier journal Computers & Mathematics with Applications published "A computer application in mathematics" by M. Sivasubramanian, who was the corresponding author, and S. Kalimuthu in 2009. Running to just 350 words, the paper claims that the authors used unspecified computer "magnification technology" to provide the first proof of a Euclidean axiom called the "parallel postulate".

"An impossible proposition was proved as possible," the paper concludes. "This is a problematic problem."

As reported by the Retraction Watch website, the paper, which has garnered no citations, has now been retracted by the journal on the grounds that it contains "no scientific content". It was accepted due to "an administrative error".

Dr Sivasubramanian, a senior lecturer in topology at the Dr. Mahalingam College of Engineering and Technology in Pollachi, India, also authored a 2010 paper that claimed that "both science and spirituality came from space". Retracting the paper last year, the journal Applied Mathematics Letters said it represented "severe abuse of the scientific publishing system".

At the time the papers were accepted, both journals were edited by Ervin Rodin, professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of Washington in St Louis. …

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