Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Mathematics

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A draft at AFC needs help[edit]

Please help review Draft:Kinds of abundant numbers. If you don't wish to, or don't know how to, do a formal AFC review please post your comments on the draft's talk page. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 14:16, 18 September 2015 (UTC)

IP address editing at Talk:Jacob Barnett[edit]

*This* would be a suitable reward, for saving that videogame from AfD. I do believe the BLP-human in question owns such an item, in fact, or a close fascimile thereof.... Ahem, ping User:Aviators99, when can I expect delivery of my just compensation?

The article Jacob Barnett is back. This time, an IP is arguing there that sources like the BBC breakfast, which place a Nobel Prize in the young Barnett's future, are reliable sources for theoretical physics. Please comment at Talk:Jacob Barnett. Sławomir
19:39, 20 September 2015 (UTC)

Possibly off-topic here, but the IP's talk page, in which the same IP appears to be working to help other editors game the Wikipedia conflict-of-interest noticeboard for articles including Dunnet (video game) (COI editor Ron Schnell) and NTA (company) (COI editors including Dtompos, NTAInc, and Wscribner), makes enlightening reading. —David Eppstein (talk) 19:50, 20 September 2015 (UTC)
What do you mean "game"? They explained to me why I should not edit the article directly and flag as COI on the Talk page so that it would go in the queue. So far it's been in the queue over a month (a one sentence change). I would hardly call this "gaming". I would say it's the opposite. Ron Schnell 23:46, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
David means WP:GAME. Common way to get people out of your way on wikipedia, is to find something they are doing wrong, and topic-ban them (or just global-ban them). That is an example of WP:GAMEing the system; whereas by contrast, what I do with the wp-coi-queue is perfectly within policy, both letter and spirit. Speaking of which, while I'm here, I'll go ahead and pull some WP:IAR, and say that my wiki-buddy User:Aviators99 aka Schnell aka the DUNNET guy, is *still* waiting for some neutral eyeballs to help him out. He's been in the edit-queue over a month now, nudge nudge, if anybody wants to spend five minutes and mainspace his request, over on said videogame's talkpage?
  p.s. I too, nearly apprehended the orangemoody mastermind, which is how I got involved with NTA... please see here,[1] where I just about screwed the pooch, but thankfully stopped shy of mistakenly accusing an OTRS volunteer of being the sockmaster!  :-/ Though I believe that User:samtar has forgiven me now, mostly.  :-)     p.p.s. David forgot to ping User:Wscribner (active), User:Dtompos (mostly inactive), User:NTAInc (not active and a violation of username policy in any case). Ron found his own way here through his custom crawler app, or through his wiki-stalking my edits as his mentor, I'm not sure which, so no harm done there, and now that all the wiki-gossip has been laid bare, all is well in the wiki-verse... though I must say, that is hardly a wikiproject notification that could in any way be considered WP:FULLYNEUTRAL. (talk) 19:07, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
Perhaps you could explain how you found this editor and why you look so specifically to their advice for guidance on this issue. —David Eppstein (talk) 15:43, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
I learned of the editor's existence during the AfD discussion. They were suspicious that I might be "meat-puppetting" and asked me some questions on my talk page. This led to some questions back and they offered advice, especially on how I should not be editing COI articles in the mainspace, which led to what you've described, which was for me to flag my one sentence requested change for review on August 14. And nobody else has offered me advice (other than one person whose advice was to delete the article), and I'll always take advice wherever I can get it. Ron Schnell 18:30, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
Ok, thanks, that makes sense and is reassuring. I was trying to find a way to allay my suspicions of paid consulting and your explanation does that. —David Eppstein (talk) 18:48, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
Lots of suspicion around here! :-O I guess it's from experience. :-( Ron Schnell 19:09, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
Not to mention... dunnet?

>eat lamp
You forcefully shove a lamp down your throat, and start choking.
You are dead.
You have scored 0 out of a possible 90 points.

I don't think COI is really all that much of a concern here :-D Sławomir
19:12, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
See the gameplay-snippet still on usertalk, starting with the bit about "eat boulder" in the |quote= param of the offline MacAddict 2003 cite. There was also one videogame reviewer that attempted to "punch tree". Too much violence in video games#Scientific_debate, eh? (talk) 19:07, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

Platonic solid popcult[edit]

Is the new "popular culture" section of Platonic solid justified to include, and does it actually report neutrally and accurately on the popular-culture aspects of platonic solids? Another editor and I have a disagreement. —David Eppstein (talk) 14:29, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

I agree that it doesn't belong there. It is not referenced to any secondary sources, which makes it impossible to determine the relative WP:WEIGHT to assign such content in relation to the rest of the article, but given the vast reams that have been written on the subject of the Platonic solids, my feeling is not much. Platonic solids have enormous cultural and historical significance (e.g., Mysterium Cosmographicum), which makes me think that for a place in the article, we should really demand multiple high quality secondary sources. Also, a plot summary of a book of relatively minor importance seems very inappropriate tone for an encyclopedia article, at least on a serious mathematical topic. Sławomir
14:41, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

In its current form, it's not good enough to include, but I suspect with some library research one could write a reasonable "popular culture" section in that article. Michael Hardy (talk) 18:26, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Integer complexity[edit]

Is the new (and currently orphaned) article titled Integer complexity worth having? (It has a page in OEIS, but I think that alone is not enough evidence of notability.) Michael Hardy (talk) 18:23, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Paul Cohen move[edit]

The article on Cohen the mathematician was moved in 2006, unilaterally/inappropriately. I have started a requested move, see Talk:Paul Cohen (mathematician)#Requested move 21 September 2015. Solomon7968 18:22, 23 September 2015 (UTC)

Euclidean space[edit]

The Euclidean space article is popular, ([2]) important and is fairly long. However, it is still not verified at least since 2013. Perhaps we should start working on it and add the inline citations for verification. I had the idea to come here to warn you guys about that issue after reading the edit summaries.

I would add the citations myself but I'm definitely going to need some help... Huritisho (talk) 22:43, 25 September 2015 (UTC)

I am wondering why this article is so popular, it is a rather hi brow math subject. I think it is because some links link to this page while they should link to more basic (low brow)/high school mathematics) pages, like Three-dimensional space (mathematics), solid geometry or maybe other more basic geometry pages. Maybe we should rename the page to Euclidean n-Space and have Euclidean Space to be about one of the more basic geometries WillemienH (talk) 17:40, 27 September 2015 (UTC)
your English is confusing to me. What are you trying to say? Huritisho (talk) 18:33, 27 September 2015 (UTC)
Yes, the article needs references and other improvements. Let me just remark that this has been one of the most contentious articles in my Wikipedia experience. It is about a technical math subject, but one that interacts with school math curriculum, physics, history, etc. So editors from different backgrounds can argue a lot. (Example issue: Did Euclid work on Euclidean spaces?) So, if you're going to work on this article, be prepared for hard work. Mgnbar (talk) 18:47, 27 September 2015 (UTC)
A good high brow reference is the text "Geometry" by Marcel Berger. I have no idea what a good non technical introduction is, but it should be possible to summarize in a way that is meaningful to most intended readers of the article. I don't have time right now, but I may take a crack at it later. The references certainly need improvement. Sławomir
18:56, 27 September 2015 (UTC)
Sorry I was tired when I wrote my remark. My point is that I think most visitors to the article are looking for something more basic geometry than what the page is offering. I think that most visitors think they will get an article that is about (high school geometry like) Three-dimensional space (mathematics) euclidean geometry solid geometry and so on , while the article is more about the academic subject of n-manifolds where the parallel postulate holds.
For Euclid he did do solid geometry see Euclid's Elements Books 11 through to 13 (Should we not have a article for every group of books of the elements?) WillemienH (talk) 10:56, 28 September 2015 (UTC)
" the article is more about the academic subject of n-manifolds where the parallel postulate holds." I'm certain this is not true. The article is about the standard real coordinate space, with its natural distance function. I don't know whether that can be made accessible to someone with "high school geometry", but it is the subject of the article. We should try to make it as accessible as possible, but not at the expense of changing the subject matter to suit who we think will be in the audience. Our most important obligation is to make sure the article is not wrong. Other considerations to do with audience are secondary.
One thing that needs clarifying is that there are really at least two things that are called Euclidean space in the literature: one is a real inner product space, and the other its underlying affine space. There is yet a third thing that is often conflated with Euclidean space, and that is R^n equipped with the dot product. While such nuances might seem trivial, they actually do matter. The Euclidean space is what's left of the real coordinate space when you've forgotten the coordinate system, but still know how to compute the inner products of things. You can try to simply this description for as low-level an audience as you like, but it still has to be made clear from the beginning. Sławomir
22:00, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

Speedy deleting without Afd[edit]

See Wikipedia:Deletion_review/Log/2015_September_27#Sucharit_Sarkar. Solomon7968 20:35, 27 September 2015 (UTC)

Andy Liu[edit]

Our article on mathematician Andy Liu recently survived a deletion discussion, but now there's a discussion on what content to include in the article that could use additional participation. See Talk:Andy Liu for details. —David Eppstein (talk) 18:37, 28 September 2015 (UTC)

Proofs, revisited[edit]

An editor, SergeyLiflandsky, has been adding proofs to articles on convergence tests. I don't think they add anything of interest to anyone who should be using Wikipedia, but I'd like a second opinion. Articles are:

  1. Matrix norm
    Including a proof of a relationship between two matrix norms which follows almost immediately from other results in the article. The (induced) (2,2)-norm is the same as the (Schatten) ∞-norm (noted in the induced norm section) which is bounded by the (Schatten) 2-norm (results from properties of the vector norm) which is the same as the entrywise (2,2)-norm (noted in the entrywise norm section).) I copied the result into the induced-norm section, but I'm not sure it belongs there.
  2. Weierstrass M-test
    Including a second proof.
  3. Uniform convergence
    Including the proof that a uniform limit of continuous functions in the "Applications to continuity" section. This one might be sufficiently interesting if no other proofs are in the article, as it uses a typical method. However, I believe the proof outline, referring to above as the "epsilon/3" trick, is sufficient. Also, as noted on the talk page, the proof is correct. As an additional note, it doesn't belong in the "Applications" section.
  1. Ratio test
    Includes a proof of Kummer's test; but the proof follows from an immediate combination of the results above.

Arthur Rubin (talk) 17:51, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

I agree with removing the proof from the article uniform convergence, since we summarize that with the "epsilon/3" trick, which suffices.
I don't entirely agree with their removal from ratio test and Weierstrass M-test. In the case of the ratio test, the proof of Kummer's test is valuable to the reader because it gives some meaning to the otherwise very mysterious auxiliary series \zeta_n. So I would strongly prefer that proof be included. Also, it is not clear to me that Kummer's test follows from the other results (the article asserts that they are all special cases of Kummer's test, suggesting that it is rather the other way around). If that's true, it could be made clearer.
For the Weierstrass M-test, I think the "other proof" that was deleted is much more natural. Prove the uniform Cauchy criterion and use that to establish uniform convergence of the series. That's probably a matter of taste, but I think it's good to have both proofs included. It also gives a good way to work in a link to the Cauchy criterion, and the test itself is given some more tangible meaning as a result. So I think there is definite encyclopedic value in having that. Sławomir
20:08, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

Arthur here really want to emphasize how brilliant he is and how everything is so obvious to him, but seems unable to understand some obvious things that follow form common sense. He also fails to understand the value of method of the proof. In the proof of Kummer's test the method is emphasized while the proofs above look like tricks. — Preceding unsigned comment added by SergeyLiflandsky (talkcontribs)

  1. For matrix norm, I now doubt even the relationship is appropriate, except in a spin-off article relationship between matrix norms. The "proof" that the induced 2,2 norm is less than the elementwise 2-norm is much simpler the way I put it;
    The induced 2,2 norm is equal to the spectral &infty; norm (interesting result, already in the article)
    The spectral &infty; norm is dominated by the spectral 2-norm (follows from properties of vector norms)
    The spectral 2-norm is equal to the elementwise 2-norm (interesting, but already in the article)
  2. For Weierstrass M-test, I replaced the proof with the newly added one, and cleaned it up a little. The last step that any "uniformly Cauchy sequence" uniformly converges needs to be added, though. I5 follows from completeness, but not immediately.
  3. For ratio test, I can see the point that the proof is not precisely a combination of proofs already in the article, but, if that proof is included, others should be removed.
  4. For uniform convergence, after studying the article, I'm sure the proof should not be there. A proof is in uniform limit theorem; I haven't checked whether they are the same proof, and whether possibly a reformmated version of SergeyLiflandsky's proof should replace that one. The proof definitely should not be in the "Applications" section of uniform convergence, and almost certainly should not be in uniform convergence at all.
May I suggest that SergeyLiflandsky's suggestions would likely be appropriate in Wikibooks, and certainly in Wikiversity (if that's still open; there had been an attempt to shut it down.)
Arthur Rubin (talk) 10:20, 30 September 2015 (UTC)
Only about uniform convergence (the rest can be worked out in the same way, as a textbook might say). Do we really need the article uniform limit theorem? The statement is probably usefully included in the main uniform convergence. I think the proof (that the uniform limit of a sequence of cont func is cont) belongs to the article. It's a very good way to understand the concept of uniform convergence, which can be exoteric to calculus students. I myself learned uniform convergence at the same time as I tried to understand the proof. It would especially be useful to point out exactly how the proof fails if the uniform convergence is weakened to point-wise convergence. The proof that is currently given at uniform limit theorem is correct but not a good one. It's much better to give a more accessible proof (say for real-valued functions on an open interval). The extension to a more general case (say values are in a metric space) is entirely mechanical; we should just say an extension is mechanical and there is no need to give a proof of the general case. -- Taku (talk) 03:19, 5 October 2015 (UTC)

Sucharit Sarkar[edit]

Deletion of Sucharit Sarkar is proposed. Michael Hardy (talk) 20:36, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

Really? Where? —David Eppstein (talk) 21:52, 29 September 2015 (UTC)
OK, apparently it's not currently proposed. It was speedily deleted and that was overturned. Perhaps whoever wanted it deleted has retreated. Michael Hardy (talk) 19:53, 30 September 2015 (UTC)

While we're speaking of proofs ...[edit]

Category:Articles containing proofs is neither fish nor fowl. It is classified as a maintenance category, but it is not clear what maintenance it enables. It is a hidden category, but is linked from List of mathematical proofs and List of mathematics categories in article space, and it is a subcategory of Category:Mathematical proofs instead of a Wikiproject category. Maintenance categories are mainly for use by maintenance projects, and the categorization guidelines state that articles should be kept out of such categories wherever possible (usually the talk pages are added instead). Generally articles end up in maintenance categories because they are put there by maintenance tags; but the articles in this category are added by hand.

So – does this category serve any maintenance purpose? If so, is there a better way to handle it? I would suggest, at a minimum, relocating it in Wikiproject space and removing mentions of it in article space. RockMagnetist(talk) 23:16, 4 October 2015 (UTC)

At one point it was decided that most proofs in most articles were unencyclopedic. The category is a maintenance category because the articles that had these proofs needed to have them removed, which is essentially a kind of maintenance. I believe it is still the consensus that most proofs that would be included in a textbook or a paper are not sufficiently notable to warrant inclusion in an encyclopedia. However, for the reasons you give, I'm not sure that the category is being handled properly. I agree that it would be good to move it to Wikiproject space and to put talk pages into the category instead of articles. Ozob (talk) 00:13, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
Ultimately, Wikipedia is what the editors want it to be. We (the editors) certainly don't want errors or other inaccuracies in the articles, but I'm not sure if the proofs are equally something that needs to be actively removed. It is probably a stretch to apply the notability criterion to the proofs since the criterion is mainly a mechanism to keep away articles on nobodies and other non-notable sports teams, bands, etc. The notability criterion does not and should not apply to calculations. The proofs should be treated similarly. Some routine proofs are probably not illuminating just as any routine computations are boring. But the decision should be made case-by-case.
Oh, about the category in question: the corollary of what I said is that there is no need for a category like that since an article doesn't mean anything from the maintainance point of view. -- Taku (talk) 00:53, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
The discussion surrounding proofs in Wikipedia articles is as old as Wikipedia itself, see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Mathematics/Proofs. As far as I can see there's no consensus on whether a consensus ever was reached in this discussion, so to speak. – Tobias Bergemann (talk) 07:42, 6 October 2015 (UTC)

AfC submission 04/10[edit]

See Draft:Spectral Correlation Density. Thank you, FoCuS contribs; talk to me! 01:00, 5 October 2015 (UTC)