Alan Baker (mathematician)
|Born||19 August 1939|
|Died||4 February 2018 (aged 78)|
|Alma mater||University College London|
University of Cambridge
|Known for||Number theory|
|Awards||Fields Medal (1970)|
Adams Prize (1972)
|Institutions||University of Cambridge|
|Thesis||Some Aspects of Diophantine Approximation (1964)|
|Doctoral advisor||Harold Davenport|
|Doctoral students||John Coates|
Alan Baker FRS (19 August 1939 – 4 February 2018) was an English mathematician, known for his work on effective methods in number theory, in particular those arising from transcendental number theory.
Alan Baker was born in London on 19 August 1939. He attended Stratford Grammar School, East London, and his academic career started as a student of Harold Davenport, at University College London and later at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he received his PhD. He was a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in 1970 when he was awarded the Fields Medal at the age of 31. In 1974 he was appointed Professor of Pure Mathematics at Cambridge University, a position he held until 2006 when he became an Emeritus. He was a fellow of Trinity College from 1964 until his death.
Baker generalized the Gelfond–Schneider theorem, itself a solution to Hilbert's seventh problem. Specifically, Baker showed that if are algebraic numbers (besides 0 or 1), and if are irrational algebraic numbers such that the set are linearly independent over the rational numbers, then the number is transcendental.
- Baker, Alan (1966), "Linear forms in the logarithms of algebraic numbers. I", Mathematika, 13: 204–216, doi:10.1112/S0025579300003971, ISSN 0025-5793, MR 0220680
- Baker, Alan (1967a), "Linear forms in the logarithms of algebraic numbers. II", Mathematika, 14: 102–107, doi:10.1112/S0025579300008068, ISSN 0025-5793, MR 0220680
- Baker, Alan (1967b), "Linear forms in the logarithms of algebraic numbers. III", Mathematika, 14: 220–228, doi:10.1112/S0025579300003843, ISSN 0025-5793, MR 0220680
- Baker, Alan (1990), Transcendental number theory, Cambridge Mathematical Library (2nd ed.), Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-39791-9, MR 0422171; 1st edition. 1975.
- Baker, Alan; Wüstholz, G. (2007), Logarithmic forms and Diophantine geometry, New Mathematical Monographs, 9, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-88268-2, MR 2382891
Honours and awards
- Trinity College website, accessed 5 February 2018
- "BAKER, Prof. Alan". Who's Who. ukwhoswho.com. 2019 (online ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. (subscription or UK public library membership required) (subscription required)
- Institute for Advanced Study: A Community of Scholars Archived 6 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine
- List of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society, retrieved 2012-11-03.
- "National Academy of Sciences, India: Foreign Fellows". Retrieved 2 June 2018.
- Biography in Encyclopædia Britannica. http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9084909/Alan-Baker
- Stolarsky, Kenneth B. (1978). "Review: Transcendental number theory by Alan Baker; Lectures on transcendental numbers by Kurt Mahler; Nombres transcendants by Michel Waldschmidt" (PDF). Bull. Amer. Math. Soc. 84 (8): 1370–1378. doi:10.1090/S0002-9904-1978-14584-4.