**2**

votes

**1**answer

73 views

### Statistical distance between discrete and continuous distributions

Are there any statistical distance functions that are capable of comparing a continuous and a discrete distribution? From reading this list
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statistical_distance
the only ...

**93**

votes

**81**answers

69k views

### Do good math jokes exist? [closed]

Have a good joke? Share.
I know this is subjective, but the principle "should be of interest to mathematicians" trumps. (I hope.)

**181**

votes

**65**answers

91k views

### Proofs without words

Can you give examples of proofs without words? In particular, can you give examples of proofs without words for non-trivial results?
(One could ask if this is of interest to mathematicians, and I ...

**77**

votes

**52**answers

14k views

### Counterexamples in Algebra?

This is certainly related to "What are your favorite instructional counterexamples?", but I thought I would ask a more focused question. We've all seen Counterexamples in Analysis and Counterexamples ...

**101**

votes

**83**answers

21k views

### Examples of great mathematical writing

This question is basically from Ravi Vakil's web page, but modified for Math Overflow.
How do I write mathematics well? Learning by example is more helpful than being told what to do, so let's try to ...

**131**

votes

**36**answers

34k views

### Widely accepted mathematical results that were later shown wrong?

I wonder if there are any examples in the history of mathematics of a mathematical proof that was initially reviewed and widely accepted as valid, only to be disproved a significant amount of time ...

**57**

votes

**33**answers

8k views

### Experimental Mathematics

I would like to ask about examples where experimentation by computers have led to major mathematical advances.
A new look
Now as the question is five years old and there are certainly more examples ...

**111**

votes

**64**answers

20k views

### Your favorite surprising connections in Mathematics

There are certain things in mathematics that have caused me a pleasant surprise -- when some part of mathematics is brought to bear in a fundamental way on another, where the connection between the ...

**46**

votes

**13**answers

6k views

### Contest problems with connections to deeper mathematics

I already posted this on math.stackexchange, but I'm also posting it here because I think that it might get more and better answers here! Hope this is okay.
We all know that problems from, for ...

**106**

votes

**22**answers

23k views

### Examples of unexpected mathematical images

I try to generate a lot of examples in my research to get a better feel for what I am doing. Sometimes, I generate a plot, or a figure, that really surprises me, and makes my research take an ...

**41**

votes

**30**answers

5k views

### Fundamental problems whose solution seems completely out of reach [closed]

In many areas of mathematics there are fundamental problems that are embarrasingly natural or simple to state, but whose solution seem so out of reach that they are barely mentioned in the literature ...

**110**

votes

**75**answers

35k views

### Best online mathematics videos?

I know of two good mathematics videos available online, namely:
Sphere inside out (part I and part II)
Moebius transformation revealed
Do you know of any other good math videos? Share.

**437**

votes

**187**answers

112k views

### Examples of common false beliefs in mathematics

The first thing to say is that this is not the same as the question about interesting mathematical mistakes. I am interested about the type of false beliefs that many intelligent people have while ...

**30**

votes

**20**answers

3k views

### Generalizations of Planar Graphs

This is a follow up to Harrison's question: why planar graphs are so exceptional. I would like to ask about (and collect answers to) various notions, in graph theory and beyond graph theory (topology; ...

**4**

votes

**0**answers

149 views

### What will be the consequences if second Hardy-Littlewood conjecture turns out to be true?

It is generally believed that the Second Hardy-Littlewood Conjecture is false. But it has not been proved (or disproved) yet. My question is,
What would be the consequences if Second ...

**12**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### New research and re-discovering classic results in “basic” real analysis

Sometimes, it happens that researchers publish a new proof of an old well-known result in "basic real analysis" (I'm referring to what some American people may call "honors calculus"). For instance, ...

**70**

votes

**10**answers

7k views

### Why are modular forms interesting?

Well, I'm aware that this question may seem very naive to the several experts on this topic that populate this site: feel free to add the "soft question" tag if you want... So, knowing nothing about ...

**11**

votes

**12**answers

2k views

### On proving that a certain set is not empty by proving that it is actually large

It happens occasionally that one can prove that a given set is not empty by proving that it is actually large. The word "large" here may refer to different properties.
For example, one can prove that ...

**18**

votes

**5**answers

945 views

### Collection of conjectures and open problems in graph theory

Is there something similar to the Kourovka Notebook for graph theory (or anyway an organized, possibly commented, collection of conjectures and open problems)?

**4**

votes

**0**answers

71 views

### Which known theorems of Lie algebras are still valid for Leibniz algebras?

Leibniz algebras can be seen as a non-commutative generalization of Lie algebras. Thus, it is common to see a lot of papers which topic is about a generalization of a classic theorem of Lie algebras ...

**88**

votes

**33**answers

53k views

### Best Algebraic Geometry text book? (other than Hartshorne)

I think (almost) everyone agrees that Hartshorne's Algebraic Geometry is still the best.
Then what might be the 2nd best?
It can be a book, preprint, online lecture note, webpage, etc.
One suggestion ...

**155**

votes

**89**answers

26k views

### Not especially famous, long-open problems which anyone can understand

Question: I'm asking for a big list of not especially famous, long open problems that anyone can understand. Community wiki, so one problem per answer, please.
Motivation: I plan to use this list ...

**57**

votes

**13**answers

16k views

### Top specialized journals

In geometry/topology, there are (at least) three specialized journals that end up publishing a large fraction of the best papers in the subject -- Geometry and Topology, JDG, and GAFA.
What journals ...

**23**

votes

**3**answers

861 views

### Graduate program applications that require questionnaires and other non-letter material

In the December 2014 AMS Notices, a letter to the editor (http://www.ams.org/notices/201411/rnoti-p1311.pdf) by Deconinck and Medlock addresses the problem of (math) graduate programs requiring letter ...

**41**

votes

**46**answers

14k views

### An example of a beautiful proof that would be accessible at the high school level?

The background of my question comes from an observation that what we teach in schools does not always reflect what we practice. Beauty is part of what drives mathematicians, but we rarely talk about ...

**106**

votes

**64**answers

14k views

### Suggestions for good notation

I occasionally come across a new piece of notation so good that it makes life easier by giving a better way to look at something. Some examples:
Iverson introduced the notation [X] to mean 1 if X is ...

**10**

votes

**18**answers

18k views

### Text for an introductory Real Analysis course.

Any suggestions on a good text to use for teaching an introductory Real Analysis course? Specifically what have you found to be useful about the approach taken in specific texts?

**16**

votes

**5**answers

1k views

### How and how much do the notations and diagrams influence our understanding of mathematical concepts?

How and how much do the notations and diagrams influence
our understanding of mathematical
concepts?
This question was stimulated by the MathOverflow questions Thinking and Explaining and ...

**117**

votes

**29**answers

37k views

### Real-world applications of mathematics, by arxiv subject area?

What are the most important applications outside of mathematics of each of the major fields of mathematics? For concreteness, let's divide up mathematics according to arxiv mathematics categories, ...

**91**

votes

**97**answers

55k views

### Famous mathematical quotes [closed]

Some famous quotes often give interesting insights into the vision of mathematics that certain mathematicians have. Which ones are you particularly fond of?
Standard community wiki rules apply: one ...

**14**

votes

**19**answers

18k views

### Good books on problem solving / math olympiad

Hello,
I would want all book tips you could think of regarding Problem solving and books in general, in elementary mathematics, with a certain flavour for "advanced problem solving". An example would ...

**5**

votes

**7**answers

8k views

### Pseudo-random number generation algorithms

What algorithms are used in modern and good-quality random number generators?

**7**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### The resolution of which conjecture/problem would advance Mathematics the most? [closed]

This is an impossibly broad question, and makes the unwarranted assumption that Mathematics is a uniform field. It might make more sense to ask the same question restricted to, say, Mathematical ...

**28**

votes

**19**answers

6k views

### Interesting applications (in pure mathematics) of first-year calculus

What interesting applications are there for theorems or other results studied in first-year calculus courses?
A good example for such an application would be using a calculus theorem to prove a ...

**36**

votes

**15**answers

7k views

### Is there a nice application of category theory to functional/complex/harmonic analysis?

[Title changed, and wording of question tweaked, by YC, because the original title asked a question which seems different from the one people want to answer.]
I've read looked at the examples in ...

**-3**

votes

**1**answer

124 views

### Decidable theorem or result that is not weaker than Tarski's theorem

I am wondering what other decidable theorem or results that is not weaker or stronger than Tarski's theorem.
Could any one give reference or a simple introduction about such result known in their ...

**82**

votes

**28**answers

14k views

### Are there other nice math books close to the style of Tristan Needham?

Hello, I've been very positively impressed by Tristan Needham's book "Visual Complex Analysis", a very original and atypical mathematics book which is more oriented to helping intuition and insight ...

**0**

votes

**1**answer

320 views

### Applications of the natural bilinear forms on the direct sum between a vector space and its dual

As is known, the vector space $V\oplus V^\ast$ admits the natural symmetric and skew-symmetric bilinear forms
$$\langle X+\xi,Y+\eta\rangle|_\pm:=\frac 1 2 (\xi(Y) \pm \eta(X)).$$
I am interested in ...

**13**

votes

**9**answers

1k views

### Combinatorial Databases

At one point, I remember being excited by seeing the website Encyclopedia of Combinatorial Structures as an extension of Sloane's Online Integer Sequence Database site. Unfortunately, the site (ECS) ...

**33**

votes

**21**answers

8k views

### Open source mathematical software.

I want some recomendation on which software I should install on my computer, an open source program for general abstract mathematical purposes (as opposed to applied mathematics).
I would likely use ...

**87**

votes

**68**answers

14k views

### Most helpful math resources on the web

What are really helpful math resources out there on the web?
Please don't only post a link but a short description of what it does and why it is helpful.
Please only one resource per answer and let ...

**16**

votes

**16**answers

3k views

### Math books for advanced high school students

I'm working in a program for teaching a group of students selected in a Olympiad competition. The program is aimed to acquaint the students with the diverse aspects of higher mathematics in a way ...

**24**

votes

**13**answers

1k views

### Big list of repositories of mathematical preprints and postprints

I'm looking for a extensive list of online repositories of mathematical preprints and postprints. I'm interested in every type of repository, including small informal and semi-formal collections, like ...

**33**

votes

**9**answers

3k views

### List of Classifying Spaces and Covers

I am looking for a list of classifying spaces $BG$ of groups $G$ (discrete and/or topological) along with associated covers $EG$; there does not seem to be such cataloging on the web. Or if not a ...

**13**

votes

**11**answers

3k views

### Mathematics and cancer research?

What are applications of mathematics in cancer research?
My answer.
Unfortunately I heard quite small about math, but I heard something about
applications of physics. And let me put this story here, ...

**13**

votes

**5**answers

841 views

### Examples of research on how people perceive mathematical objects

What examples are there on research related to human perception and mathematical objects?
For example, the shape of a beer glass influences drinking habits,
since people are bad at integrating.
...

**38**

votes

**30**answers

38k views

### What programming languages do mathematicians use? [closed]

I understand this might be a slightly subjective question, but I am honestly curious what programming languages are used by the mathematics community.
I would imagine that there is a group of ...

**28**

votes

**14**answers

3k views

### Fantastic properties of Z/2Z

Recently I gave a lecture to master's students about some nice properties of the group with two elements $\mathbb{Z}/2\mathbb{Z}$. Typically, I wanted to present simple, natural situations where the ...

**35**

votes

**31**answers

6k views

### Trichotomies in mathematics

Added. Thanks to all who participated! Let me humbly apologize to those who were annoyed (quite understandably) by this thread, deeming it nothing more than an exercise in futility. If you thought the ...

**3**

votes

**1**answer

61 views

### The link and equivalence between variant definition of computation model and computational complexity over reals

To unify the numerical computation and classic computability theory, or to pave a foundation for the numerical computation, mathematicians present variant computation model and computational ...