This week's seminars
Pure Maths Colloquium: The future of mathematics?
11 November 2019 13:00 in CM101
Over the last few years, something (possibly a mid-life crisis) has made me become concerned about the reliability of modern mathematics, and about how the methods we mathematicians have traditionally used to prove theorems are scaling with the advent of the internet /ArXiv, and pressure on academics to get big results out there. I have started experimenting with a formal computer proof verification system called Lean, integrating it into my undergraduate teaching at Imperial and pushing it to see if it can handle modern mathematical definitions such as perfectoid spaces and the other ideas which got Peter Scholze a Fields Medal in 2018. I personally believe that Lean is part of what will become a paradigm shift in the way humans do mathematics, and that people who do not switch will ultimately be left behind. Am I right? Only time will tell. This talk will be suitable for a general scientific audience -- mathematics undergraduates, computer scientists and philosophers will all find it comprehensible.
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