Mathematical Digest


Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"Stacking Up the Evidence." Random Samples, Science, 7 March 2003, page 1513.

Thomas Hales of the University of Pittsburgh is looking for help verifying thecomputer-aided proof of Kepler's conjecture about the densest packing ofspheres. A dozen mathematicians have spent more than four years examining the250-page proof of Hales and Sam Ferguson for the Annals of Mathematicsand are "99% certain" that the proof is correct. Hales has a website describing theproject that he hopes will provide absolute certainty of the proof's validity.

--- Mike Breen