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Is Mathematics Discovered or Invented?

Some think math is invented. Evidence, though, points towards discovery.

Some think math is invented. (See the article by Peter Biles.) Evidence, though, points towards discovery. Simultaneous mathematical discovery supports this viewpoint. Many mathematical breakthroughs are sometimes independently reported by two or more mathematicians at roughly the same time. The most famous is the simultaneous discovery of calculus by Isaac Newton and Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz. Newton was secretive about his discovery and shared his results with only a few members of the Royal Society. When Leibnitz published his discovery of the calculus, Newton charged him with plagiarism. Today, historians agree that the discoveries were independent of each other. Here are some other lesser-known examples of simultaneous discovery. The Papoulis-Gerchberg Algorithm (PGA).  The PGA is an ingenious method for recovering lost Read More ›