DO the math, DON'T overpay. We make high quality, low-cost math resources a reality.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Throwback Fact of the Week- Fermat and his Last Theorem

This fact is actually in reference to the Monday we just passed, January 12th. On that day in 1665, Pierre de Fermat passed away. Fermat, of course, is known for the infamous conjecture “Fermat’s last theorem.”
In this conjecture, Fermat insisted  that xn + yn = zn has no solutions when x, y, and z are non-zero integers and n > 2.  The theorem was found in the margins of another math text that Fermat had been studying, and was published by his son in 1670.

Fermat’s Last Theorem has been a subject of intrigue for mathematicians and non-mathematicians alike for many years because it took more than three centuries to find a true proof. British mathematician Andrew Wiles finally proved the conjecture in 1994, but he used tools that were not invented until long after Fermat’s death.  It is likely that his original proof  in the 1600s was incorrect.

The theorem is known widely, and has even been referenced by  pop-culture by The Simpsons and Star Trek: The Next Generation. It remains a fascinating piece of mathematical history to this day.

1 comment:

  1. But we shall keep in mind that may be Fermat is right about his proof as he went ahead to mention that ancestors didn't know everything

    The general equation of Fermat's last theorem for all powers could have been visualised by him that must satisfy Pythagoras theorem as well

    Such an Equation can not be in LaTex