13.0512 open questions in the disciplines

From: Humanist Discussion Group (willard@lists.village.virginia.edu)
Date: Sat Mar 25 2000 - 11:04:54 CUT

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                   Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 13, No. 512.
           Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London

       [1] From: cbf@socrates.berkeley.edu (53)
             Subject: Re: 13.0505 open questions in the disciplines

       [2] From: "Osher Doctorow" <osher@ix.netcom.com> (18)
             Subject: Open Questions in disciplines

             Date: Sat, 25 Mar 2000 10:51:38 +0000
             From: cbf@socrates.berkeley.edu
             Subject: Re: 13.0505 open questions in the disciplines

    I took Matsuba's list somewhat differently--namely, as an attempt to show
    that it is inherently impossible to provide a list of unsolved questions
    in the study of literature because of the very nature of the
    discipline. None of the questions that he listed can be "solved", in the
    sense that one can solve a problem in the sciences.

    Charles Faulhaber The Bancroft Library UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
    (510) 642-3782 FAX (510) 642-7589 cfaulhab@library.berkeley.edu

    On Thu, 23 Mar 2000, Humanist Discussion Group wrote:

    > Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 13, No. 505.
    > Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
    > <http://www.princeton.edu/~mccarty/humanist/>
    > <http://www.kcl.ac.uk/humanities/cch/humanist/>
    > Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2000 08:19:34 +0000
    > From: "Osher Doctorow" <osher@ix.netcom.com>
    > >
    > Dear Colleagues:
    > Stephen N. Matsuba of the University of Waterloo replied to my recent
    > indirect call for listing 20 main open questions in each (academic)
    > discipline with some interesting points and a list of 7 questions in
    > literary and linguistic studies (see volume 13, no. 501).
    > I will match him by listing 7 main open questions in mathematics in the
    > last 5 years, as I do below. I will list another 7 as soon as somebody
    > lists 7 others in another or the same field.
    > 1. rare events/large deviations, 2. nonsmooth analysis (broken graphs,
    > graphs with holes in them, graphs with sharp point turns, etc.), 3.
    > solutions/approximations of Navier-Stokes equations in
    > hydrodynamics/aerodynamics, 4. solutions of Schrodinger equation, 5.
    > solutions of Einstein field equations, 6. topological control theory, 7.
    > algebra of nonnegative semigroups and non-Hilbert Banach spaces.
    > By the way, Waterloo University, McGill University, and Montreal/Quebec are
    > 3 of the best universities of Canada, which in my humble opinion puts them
    > somewhere between Harvard-Yale-Princeton and Oxford-Cambridge-London on the
    > scale of great universities. I mention this because I have a conjecture
    > concerning the greatness of universities being positively correlated with
    > their age with obviously a fair number of exceptions. I may say something
    > about this later if I can avoid insulting half the researchers in the
    > Yours,
    > Osher

             Date: Sat, 25 Mar 2000 10:52:09 +0000
             From: "Osher Doctorow" <osher@ix.netcom.com>
             Subject: Open Questions in disciplines

    Dear Colleagues:

    I have a few additions to yesterday's remarks. First of all, I should have
    phrased the open questions in the form: how do you solve, or what are the
    characteristics of, etc.

    Secondly, I should have "raised" by 7 as I think they say in the cinema, so
    I list below 7 more main open questions in mathematics of the last 5
    years. To avoid repeating "what are the characteristics of...?" just affix
    this or "how do you solve...? or appropriate expressions of similar type to
    the numbered items.

    8. 2-time scale mathematics (applied, e.g., to geophysical research, neural
    networks, theoretical physics), 9. quantum and molecular computers, 10
    geometric-algebraic physical mathematics including Clifford algebras,
    octonions, division algebras, quaternions, etc., applicable to quantum
    theory and relativity, 11. mathematics of genetic engineering, 12. Lie
    groups and algebras (applicable almost everywhere in physical sciences and
    mathematics), 13. mathematical logic including
    belief/fuzzy/possibility/probability etc., 14. fractals/chaos/dynamic
    systems (weather modeling, geographical modeling, biological modeling, etc.
    - generally irregularly shaped boundaries).

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