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Posts Tagged "graph theory"

Beautiful Minds

The Controlled Chaos of Creativity


Fifty years ago, Sarnoff Mednick defined the process of creative thinking as “the forming of associative elements into new combinations which either meet specific requirements or are in some way useful. The more mutually remote the elements of the new combination, the more creative the process or solution.” Mednick argued that creative people have flat associative [...]

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Roots of Unity

Online Game Crowd-Sources Theorems

So close! Can we just round this one up to success? Screenshot from Nice Neighbors by Chris Staecker.

Now is your chance to prove some theorems without knowing what they mean! Chris Staecker, a mathematician at Fairfield University, created the game Nice Neighbors to get crowd-sourced solutions to problems from a field called digital topology. Whether that means anything to you or not, you might be able to help Staecker and his colleagues prove some [...]

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Roots of Unity

Wrong in Public: the 4-Color Theorem Edition

Wrong in Public is a new, hopefully very occasional, series on Roots of Unity. I don’t like being wrong in public, but sometimes I make a mistake in a post, and sometimes mistakes are interesting. In last Friday’s post on the 4-color theorem, I talked about some of the hypotheses of the theorem, including the [...]

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Roots of Unity

Having Fun with the 4-Color Theorem

The 4-color theorem is fairly famous in mathematics for a couple of reasons. First, it is easy to understand: any reasonable map on a plane or a sphere (in other words, any map of our world) can be colored in with four distinct colors, so that no two neighboring countries share a color. Second, computers [...]

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