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Brilliant new Twitter account proves mathematical theorems in 140 characters or less

Alex Wilhelm

Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected] Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected]

A new Twitter account is out to prove various bit of math in the space of a single tweet.

Assuming that you have worked your way through a proof or two in your life – and who hasn’t – you will remember their trickiness, and length. However, given the terse character limit of Twitter, the folks behind @TinyProof are pressed for space.

The result of that length constriction is the following, for example:

I’m going to hose this up, so math folks correct me in the comments, but I think that this says something along the following lines: The function ‘f’ is continuous for value between a and b;  for the value a, f(a) – read as ‘f of a’ – is less than value y, which is less than value derived from f(b); there is a value x inside the set bounded by a and b such that f(x) is less than y. Something something something there exists a value c such that f(c)= y.

In other words, provided that y is between the values of f(a) and f(b), and the function is continuous, there will exists a value c between a and b that will solve for y.

I proved this in college. Professor Hadari, I am so sorry.

A similar Twitter account, @ProofInATweet exists, but doesn’t appear to be very active. More of this sort of thing, please.

Top Image Credit: Sharat Ganapati Via the Math subreddit