Terry Tao Solves the Erdős Discrepancy Problem
Terry Tao, member of IPAM’s Science Advisory Board and professor of math at UCLA, has published a solution to the Erdős discrepancy problem, a puzzle about the properties of an infinite, random sequence of +1s and -1s. In the 1930s, Hungarian mathematician Paul Erdős wondered whether such a sequence would always contain patterns and structure within the randomness. Tao proved that the discrepancy is infinite no matter the sequence you choose. Tao’s proof was covered by several publications including Nature, Scientific American, and USA Today. He gave a talk about it at IPAM on October 8, 2015. The video is available on IPAM’s YouTube Channel.