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Math table September 18, 2018

The next math table takes place Tuesday, Sep 18, at 5:30pm in SC 232.
Sebastien Vasey will talk about


Abstract: David Hilbert's "Entscheidungsproblem" asks for an algorithm to prove or disprove any mathematical statement. The non-existence of such an algorithm was proven independently by Church and Turing. This is often interpreted as meaning that there is no streamlined method to prove something: it takes hard work and creativity... Or does it? What did Church and Turing precisely prove? Could we imagine a hypercomputer capable of performing infinitely-many steps in a finite time? Could we build such a machine, or at least come close? I will discuss these questions and more.