# Newton’s Principia: A Story of Lost and Stolen Books and Scrupulous Detective Work Across Continents

Caltech’s own copy of the first edition of the Principia is part of the Institute’s Archives and Special Collections. In the 18th century, it belonged to French mathematician and natural philosopher Jean-Jacques d’Ortous de Mairan, whose signature can be seen in the left margin of the title page. More recently, […]

The goal of the “busy beaver” game is to find the longest-running computer program. Its pursuit has surprising connections to profound questions in math. A visualization of the longest-running five-rule Turing machine currently known. Each column of pixels represents one step in the computation, moving from left to right. Black […]

ANIMATION A team of mathematicians from RUDN University added new symbolic integration functionality to the Sage computerized algebra system. The team implemented ideas and methods suggested by the German mathematician Karl Weierstrass in the 1870s. The results were published in the Journal of Symbolic Computation. The first computer program capable of […]

An exercise in pure mathematics has led to a wide-ranging theory that unites Plato with geophysics. Gábor Domokos (left) and Douglas Jerolmack had previously collaborated on a project that spanned mathematics and geophysics. COURTESY OF GÁBOR DOMOKOS; ERIC SUCAR/UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA On a mild autumn day in 2016, the Hungarian […]

Majorana constellations of some of the most quantum states in various dimensions. Credit: Luis L. Sánchez Soto Investigators develop a method to determine how quantum the state of a system is. Large objects, such as baseballs, vehicles, and planets, behave in accordance with the classical laws of mechanics formulated by […]

WPI mathematical physicist Mayer Humi has been studying the solar system for decades. Credit: Worcester Polytechnic Institute/Matthew Burgos Using a limited set of mathematical equations, Worcester Polytechnic Institute mathematical sciences professor Mayer Humi said he has confirmed a 224-year-old math conjecture about the origins of our solar system, providing insights […]

If odd perfect numbers do exist, they’ll need to satisfy an increasingly absurd number of restrictions. ILLUSTRATION: JASON CHUANG/QUANTA MAGAZINE AS A HIGH school student in the mid-1990s, Pace Nielsen encountered a mathematical question that he’s still struggling with to this day. But he doesn’t feel bad: The problem that captivated […]

Example of a cross-section of K3 surface in 3-space, similar to a model Utah State University and University of Missouri-St. Louis mathematicians used to examine string dualities between F-theory and heterotic theory in eight dimensions. Credit: USU Thomas Hill and Andreas Malmendier of Utah State University explore a string duality […]

The ancient philosopher Plato conjectured that the universe was composed of particular geometric shapes; the earth, of cubes. Findings from a multidisciplinary research team found truth in Plato’s belief. The ancient Greek philosopher was on to something, researchers found. Plato, the Greek philosopher who lived in the 5th century B.C.E., […]