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Topic: Pell type equations
Replies: 29   Last Post: Apr 29, 2012 5:37 PM

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Helmut Richter

Posts: 164
Registered: 7/4/06
Re: Pell type equations
Posted: Apr 29, 2012 7:23 AM
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On Sun, 29 Apr 2012, Timothy Murphy wrote:

> Helmut Richter wrote:
>

> > It is from another era when the actual handling of equations was the aim
> > of the algebraists, and not so much the structure of the solution.

>
> What exactly (or even vaguely) does that mean?


It has only a vague meaning. It means that I have yet to see an algebra
book (beyond grammar school level) of the last 70 years where the author
takes the pain of explaining how to transform equations in order to get
them solved. Today the focus is on algebraic structures. The modern
approach, as for instance in van der Waerden's book which originally had
the title "Modern Algebra" and later "Algebra" is, of course, in general
much more fruitful for mathematics, but if someone has an equation and
wants to find its solutions, he may be better off with an old book.

--
Helmut Richter



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