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Creator to discuss online math encyclopedia March 24

by UofL Today last modified Mar 11, 2011 01:23 PM

What began as a simple list of numbers on cards has grown into a massive, searchable online math database.

Creator to discuss online math encyclopedia March 24

Neil Sloane

Creator Neil Sloane will talk about that contribution to math and science when he lectures March 24 at the University of Louisville.

Sloane, a scientist at AT&T Shannon Labs, will give the free, public talk, "The Online Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences," at 6 p.m. in Room 101, Strickler Hall. Sloane's talk is the annual Bullitt lecture sponsored by the UofL mathematics department.

The Bullitt family endowed the general-interest lectureship to honor former U.S. Solicitor General William Marshall Bullitt's interest in mathematics.

Sloane has been running the database of number sequences for 47 years, although the site of 200,000-plus entries recently has been turned into a wiki with many associate editors. Mathematicians and other scientists search it daily by numbers or by sequence names.

Sloane has written books on topics ranging from error-correcting codes to rock-climbing and has been with AT&T, formerly Bell Labs, since 1969. His numerous awards include the Mathematical Association of American's Chauvenet Prize in 1979, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' Hamming Medal in 2005 and the IEEE Information Theory Society's Shannon Award in 1998. He received his electrical engineering doctorate from Cornell University in 1967.

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