Thursday, September 09, 2004

The Rieman Hypothesis is the key to the Apocalypse

Via Not Even Wrong, an excellent synopsis of progress to date on the Poincare Conjecture.

Also, a link to a truly pointless article in the Guardian. I can sympathize with the plight of science writers; explaining some of the more abstract concepts in mathematics can be extremely difficult. But can you at least not be completely wrong ?
[If]... somebody really has cracked the so-called Riemann hypothesis, financial disaster might follow. Suddenly all cryptic codes could be breakable. No internet transaction would be safe.
Sigh.. later on comes this attempt to explain the first of the seven Millenium problems:
Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture: Euclid geometry for the 21st century, involving things called abelian points and zeta functions and both finite and infinite answers to algebraic equations
Why even bother...

As an aside, does anyone know why all of a sudden there is renewed interest in the Poincare conjecture ? There was a survey at least 3-4 months ago in the Scientific American about Perelman's work, and his first preprint was posted in 2002.
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