Dedekind's problem is about enumerating antichains in the Boolean lattice. Is there an explicit reference where Dedekind stated this problem? Is there a good motivation to study this problem except that it is an old open problem stated by a famous mathematician?

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    $\begingroup$ I don't know an exact reference (probably OEIS may provide some). However, for motivation, I can say that I struggled with some computations that have this problem as a particular case. For example, see here arxiv.org/abs/1902.00864 an article on which Bruns, Garcia and Moci try to compute the number of irreducible elements on the monoid Q(M) when M is a uniform matroid (I can't add the details here, but if M is the uniform matroid with rank n and n elements, this number reduces to Dedekind's problem). Being able to compute them would be very interesting. $\endgroup$ – Luis Ferroni Feb 12 at 14:13
  • $\begingroup$ Richard Dedekind, Über Zerlegungen von Zahlen durch ihre größten gemeinsamen Teiler, Gesammelte Werke, 2, pp. 103–148 (1897). regrettably behind a paywall $\endgroup$ – Carlo Beenakker Feb 12 at 14:18

Speaking as a nonexpert, the enumeration and classification of monotone Boolean functions can give insight into optimization problems in logic, for instance by considering how far off an arbitrary function is from a monotone one. Doing a web search should reveal other motivations for studying Dedekind's problem.

Gerhard "Who Doesn't Like Enumeration Problems?" Paseman, 2020.02.12.


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