Basic notions: Barry Mazur (Harvard) - Heuristics in Arithmetic---and Randomness

Thu, 02/12/202116:00-17:15
Zoom, public screening in Ross 70
Link to recording:

ABSTRACT: Some conjectures about issues in number theory are made by first considering everything you know about the structure of the underlying problem and then, assuming that everything else is random---you compute---to get an estimate, which allows you then to make a guess---a conjecture. I will discuss a number of classical examples of this, and of current 'heuristics' that include recent work with Karl Rubin, and Alexandra Shlapentokh. Since this is a general Basic Notions seminar I hope that my audience will also offer examples in their own specific field(s) of interest