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Category Archives: ETH

Our research institute has a nicer logo than yours

Here is the logo of the new Institute for Theoretical Studies of ETH:

Bounded gaps between primes: some grittier details

Because I was teaching a course on prime numbers this semester and had just finished a chapter on Vinogradov’s method when his paper appeared, I promptly switched my plans for the last classes in order to present some aspects of Yitang Zhang’s theorem on bounded gaps between primes. In addition, one of the speakers of [...]

A missing word

From the blog of the rare books collection of the ETH Library, I just learnt that the word for the study and classification of grape species that I was looking for is “ampelography” (ampélographie in French). (The relevance of this word to my daily life is that the computers on my home network are named [...]

Am I a topologist?

Topological thinking is rooted in local issues — the soil, the plants, the weather, and the local customs. Peoples’ well-being is its objective.

Stickelberger’s copy of Jacobi’s “Canon arithmeticus”

I am currently the head of the Mathematics Library at ETH (which is separate from the main library). A few days ago, I surveyed some of the (relatively) old books in our collection with one of the librarians, just to see if some of these should be handled in a special way. We didn’t find [...]