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Topic: This Week's Finds in Mathematical Physics (Week 112)
Replies: 9   Last Post: Nov 29, 1997 6:06 PM

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Keith Ramsay

Posts: 1,745
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: most famous codiscoverer gets credit (Matthew Effect) [was: This Week's Fin
Posted: Nov 29, 1997 6:06 PM
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In article <NoJunkMail-2811970926510001@abinitio.mpce.mq.edu.au>,
NoJunkMail@this.address (Gerry Myerson) writes:
|I'm not sure how to categorize what I first learned as the Weil Conjecture
|(on elliptic curves) which seems to have migrated through
|Shimura-Taniyama-Weil and is now mostly called Shimura-Taniyama.

For awhile, I would hear people call it "Taniyama-Weil" too.

I once attended a talk where the speaker (who might not mind remaining
anonymous this time) accidentally referred a "Weil curve" E in the
presence of Serge Lang. (The speaker knew better, but, as I said, had
an accident.) He was soon confronted with Lang's "file" on this topic,
the product of Lang's efforts to get proper attribution for the
conjecture. (It has been said that Weil at least described a certain
refinement, which is why one might hear his name stuck in there.)

Today, we can even refer to the "Nova" television program about
Fermat's Last Theorem if anyone needs an authoritative source
giving Taniyama and Shimura their due. :-)

Anyhow, I suspect Lang deserves a lot of the credit for overcoming
the force of Baez's law in this case. Sooner or later, I suppose the
Taniyama-Shimura conjecture might get named the Wiles-X theorem where
X is whoever it is that gets the remaining cases.

Keith Ramsay In no way, shape or form did Kevin represent a viable
kramsay@aol.com alternative to mental illness. --VALIS, Phillip Dick







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