Kenneth Appel


Kenneth Appel

Kenneth Appel (born 1932) is a mathematician who in 1976, with colleague Wolfgang Haken at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, solved one of the most famous problems in mathematics, the four-color theorem. They proved that any two-dimensional map, with certain limitations, can be filled in with four colors without any adjacent "countries" sharing the same color. Appel's children, including Laurel Appel, Peter Appel, and Andrew Appel, now a professor at Princeton, helped in the checking of over 1000 topological cases that constitute this proof.

The proof has been one of the most controversial of modern mathematics because of its heavy dependence on computer "number-crunching" to sort through possibilities. Even Appel has agreed, in numerous interviews, that it lacks elegance and provided no new insight that has guided future mathematical research.

Others, however, have pointed to this work as the start of a sea-change in mathematicians' attitudes toward computers - which they had largely disdained as a tool for engineers rather than for theoreticians - leading to the creation of what is sometimes called "experimental mathematics."

From 1993 through 2002, Appel was head of the mathematics department at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, New Hampshire. Although retired now, he still works and occasionally teaches there and has an office on campus (in the new Kingsbury Hall.)


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  • Kenneth Appel — Kenneth Appel, auch Ken Appel (* 8. Oktober 1932 in Brooklyn, New York City) ist ein US amerikanischer Mathematiker, der vor allem wegen seines Beweises des Vierfarbensatzes mit Wolfgang Haken 1976 bekannt ist. Appel studierte bis 1953 am Queens… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kenneth Appel — (né en 1932) est un mathématicien qui a résolu en 1976, avec son collègue Wolfgang Haken à Université de l Illinois à Urbana Champaign, l un des plus célèbres problèmes de mathématiques, le problème des quatre couleurs . Ils démontrèrent que… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kenneth Appel — (8 de octubre de 1932) es un matemático que, en 1976 resolvió, junto a su colega Wolfgang Haken, uno de los más famosos problemas en matemática: el teorema de los cuatro colores. Categorías: Nacidos en 1932Matemáticos de Estados UnidosMatemáticos …   Wikipedia Español

  • Kenneth Appel — (1945 1981) fue un informático, militante del partido conservador de Gran Bretaña y excéntrico escritor, sus obras: Mi Militancia , La Topología y la Política , Matemática = Verdad y Mi Militancia (segunda parte) . Amante de los animales, dueño… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Appel (Begriffsklärung) — Appel (niederdeutsch für Apfel) steht für: Orte Appel, eine Gemeinde im Landkreis Harburg in Niedersachsen einen Ortsteil der Gemeinde Helvesiek im Landkreis Rotenburg (Wümme) in Niedersachsen Appel ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Anna… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Appel — may refer to:*Appel reaction, an organic chemical reaction *Appel, Germany, a municipality in Lower Saxony, Germany *Appel (Nijkerk), a hamlet in the Dutch province Gelderlandurname*Allen Appel, American novelist *Andrew Appel, American computer… …   Wikipedia

  • Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds — Kenneth Edmonds Pour les articles homonymes, voir Kenneth, Babyface et Edmonds. Babyface Nom Kenneth Edmonds Naissance 10 avril 1958 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds — Kenneth Edmonds Pour les articles homonymes, voir Kenneth, Babyface et Edmonds. Babyface Nom Kenneth Edmonds Naissance 10 avril 1958 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Appel, Kenneth — Appel , Kenneth …   Scientists

  • Kenneth Starr — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Starr. Kenneth Starr Photo officielle de Kenneth Starr …   Wikipédia en Français


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