Archive for January, 2016

Errata in the age of Open Access journals

January 31, 2016

[Posted on january 31, 2016]

Nearly nine years ago (time flies!) on this blog I wondered aloud about errors in mathematical papers (errors that are made even by the best authors, in the best journals with very competent referees), and the problem of the subsequent errata that are possibly being missed by readers (at least for a good few months maybe). So I proposed at the time as a solution a centralised system listing all errata in a single place.

In the meantime, MO was born, and I asked there a question about when to take published results for granted at all, the consensus seemingly being: never.

So in the world (indeed, the era) of paper journals, it was hoped that the readers would find the erratum early enough that it doesn’t affect too nastily any work building on the problematic proofs. But in the age of Open Access online journals, one might wish things to change a bit.

To wit, the Open Access Electronic-only journal Algebraic Geometry has issued its first erratum at the end of last year. But, as of today, if one downloads the original paper, nothing warns the reader about the erratum.

Wouldn’t it be wise, and very feasible technically, to add above the title in the pdf of the original article a note like “an erratum for this paper has been issued” with a link to it ?

Some january newslets

January 30, 2016

[Posted on january 30, 2015]

In no particular order :

  • the january issue of Gazette des Mathématiciens has just appeared, including among many other things a very nice overview of the proof of the Willmore Conjecture by Fernando C. Marques and André Neves, and also a dossier on Open Access publications in general and the example of the recent conversion of Annales de l’Institut Fourier in particular
  • for another example of a topic that is being well digested, there’s the work of Vincent Lafforgue on the Langlands program, which beyond the course by Michael Harris at Columbia, will also be the subject of a course by Sophie Morel at IPM in Tehran
  • two recent interviews of mathematicians in video, both at CIRM : Sylvia Serfaty and David Ruelle
  • the ceremony awarding the 2015 Fermat Prize to Laure Saint-Raymond and Peter Scholze will take place in Toulouse at the end of march. Note that the wording for Scholze’s citation starts with “pour l’invention des espaces perfectoïdes…“, a welcome non-Platonistic choice
  • another useless experiment of this blog’s host : turn left by \pi/2 at n iff n\pm1 are twin primes, else make a fixed step (say of +50) on a straight line. Plot. Here are the results up to n=1500 ; n=100,000 ; n=500,000 ; n=1,500,000. Resulting insight : nil…








Further developments around the work of Mochizuki

January 15, 2016

[Posted on january 15, 2016]

Two new things in that story :

  • Vesselin Dimitrov has just posted a preprint showing that, assuming the proof of Mochizuki is correct, it in fact is leading to effective results, something which, if I understand well, was not clear to experts (e.g. in Brian Conrad’s notes at least), so this looks like an important development
  • registration for the july IUT Summit at RIMS is now open

Portrait of Johannes Neudörfer, His Son, and Their Rubik’s Cube, after Nicolas Neufchâtel by Mike Licht on flickr