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Department of

Mathematics and Computer Science

Title

Rational Right Triangles and a Million Dollar Problem

Event Start DateThursday, February 16, 2012
Serra Hall, Room 314
Event Start Time1:00 pm - 1:50 pm
CostCost: free
Message

Rational Right Triangles and a Million Dollar Problem
Presented by Professor James Brown, Clemson University

Pizza will be provided.

Audience: students and faculty

Abstract

One of the most striking properties about many problems in number theory is the simplicity with which the problem can be stated combined with the difficulty of actually proving any results on the problem.  A famous example of such a problem is Fermat's Last Theorem.  This theorem states that for n > 2 the only solutions to the equation X^n + Y^n = Z^n satisfied XYZ=0.  This ``theorem'' remained unproven for over 300 years until it was finally proven in 1995 by Andrew Wiles!   This talk will focus on a similarly simple to state problem about areas of right triangles.  We will state the problem and see how it is related to an open conjecture whose solution is worth a million dollars.

ContactAmy Prout | aprout@sandiego.edu | 619-260-4706