23

If anyone's still reading this thread, here's a few more data points that appear to back Feynmann's interpretation. Erik Bäcklin, Nature vol 123, no. 3098, p. 409 (1929): $1.59875 \cdot 10^{-19} \pm 0.004796 \cdot 10^{-19} $. Wide error bar overlaps Millikan's. Gunnar Kellstrom, Phys. Rev. 1935: $1.60709 \cdot 10^{-19} \pm 0.011 \cdot 10^{-19} $. ...


19

The 16th (1995) edition of Kaye and Laby includes the following progression of the accepted values for the charge of an electron. The first value "is essentially Milikan's oil drop value" and the second is "the 'X-ray grating' value". I couldn't find any more details about the actual experiments. The standard errors are often over-optimistic, indicating ...


15

Fermat wasn't so much a "lawyer" as a magistrat which means that he sat on successively higher levels of the Parlement of Toulouse, France. This period (17th century) was before the emergence of the doctrine of the separation of powers in Western thought, so that the Parlement was not a "Parliament" in the modern English sense of the word, but rather the ...


14

I feel somewhat conflicted writing this because Bell's book inspired many people to become mathematicians, including some prominent ones. However, it is not a canonical introduction to the history of mathematics and mathematicians, "historians of mathematics tend to distrust the historical reliability of most of Bell’s accounts"(Leo Corry). We recently had a ...


13

The following is how far we get from the direct English and German Wikipedia references. I had a look at the German Wikipedia reference wythagoras pointed out. In D. Nachmansohn, R. Schmidt: Die große Ära der Wissenschaft in Deutschland 1900–1933, 1988, Stuttgart : Wiss. Verl.-Ges., I could only find one reference regarding Hilbert, namely, the Hilbert ...


13

I would say that no area of mathematics has ever been completely abandoned. The areas go in and out of fashion, but nothing seems to be completely abandoned. For example, approximately in 1940's most mainstream mathematical journals stopped to consider papers on elementary geometry. But the area is not abandoned in any way. First of all, there are "non-...


12

The big surprise I got from my research was that the theorem apparently originated with Maclaurin, whom we remember more for the Maclaurin series than this theorem. From this pdf (you have to go to the last page to get to the history portion): Maclaurin, Euler, Cramer (1700’s) assert the theorem, no valid proof But it was Bézout who found a proof, ...


12

Poincare refers to the Lie's solution of the so-called problem of space, a.k.a. the Helmholtz , or Riemann-Helmholtz, or Helmholtz-Lie problem of space, which amounts to characterizing all manifolds (originally, only 3-dimensional) with free mobility of figures (roughly, homogeneity and isotropy). In modern terms, free mobility amounts to constant Riemannian ...


11

Bjerknes cites a letter from Abel to Christopher Hansteen, a fellow professor of Bjerknes at Christiania/Oslo, who had put up and mentored Abel in the beginning of his career. Den omgangskreds af aeldre, hvortil han hörte, var vel selvfölgelig heller ikke sa enthusiastisk Gauss-stemt som Berlinerungsdommen. Sjelden er det derhos, at ikke den stigende ros ...


11

User plannapus points out that the proposer of the ad links to the original source, which is the first page of Diophantus’s Arithmetica, specifically the 1621 translation by Claude Gaspard Bachet de Méziriac. The right-hand side is Greek, and the left-hand side a Latin translation; the bottom seems to be the translator's commentary. (Google Books has a ...


11

For what it’s worth, here are the languages of the 1645 math/phys paper and book titles from the years 1690–1919 in a bibtex file I have. Of course unscientific with all kinds of biases, but I imagine the catalogues of Reuss (1808), the Royal Society (1800–1883) and Jahrbuch (1868–1942) might give a similar plot. Added (from the same file; graph is smoother ...


10

Are you familiar with Michael J. Crowe's book, A History of Vector Analysis? While I haven't read the book this article is well worth a read, and it seems to be a good summary. Of course, vector analysis is the precursor to linear algebra, so it won't directly address your question. Crowe does discuss briefly Grassmann's Ausdehnungslehre, one of the roots ...


10

In my grandfather book, lately translated from German: Recollections of a Jewish Mathematician in Germany, by Abraham A. Fraenkel, edited by Jiska Cohen-Mansfield, translated by Allison Brown. Hilbert’s response to a question of Bernhard Rust, the Nazi Reich Minister for Science, Education, and Popular Culture, was typical. At a banquet in 1934 in ...


10

Wikipedia also says:"this is not a quote by Gauss, but is (a translation of) the end of a sentence from the biography of Eisenstein by Moritz Cantor (1877), one of Gauss's last students and a historian of mathematics, who was summarizing his recollection of a remark made by Gauss about Eisenstein in a conversation many years earlier". Human memory is tricky ...


9

The theory of Linear Algebra, along with the associated concept of linear mapping, was named as "linear" by its creator, Hermann Graßmann, which he developed in his 1844 linear algebra manifesto, Die Lineale Ausdehnungslehre, ein neuer Zweig der Mathematik [The Theory of Linear Extension, a New Branch of Mathematics], and also later in Die Ausdehnungslehre: ...


9

Young's original setup demonstrating interference of light was not double slit but sunbeam splitting with a single thin card. He presented a paper On the theory of Light and Color to the Royal Society in May 1801 published Proceedings of the Royal Society of London A 92 (1802) (see here and here), and in November 1803 gave a public talk Experimental ...


9

There were actually two surviving brothers: source See also page 12 of Robert Kanigel's biography of Ramanujan.


8

This is specifically about the history of linear algebra, history of Matrices and determinants.


8

You could find the original manuscript by Ramanujan in the following work. Srinivasa Ramanujan: Notebooks of Srinivasa Ramanujan. Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bombay, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, 1984. This work contains 390 pages of scanned version of Ramanujan's lost notebook. The two famous book series which contains proofs and added ...


8

Eigenvectors (but not the word for them!) gradually appeared in 18s century in solving differential equations which we write now as $y'=Ay$ describing all sorts of oscillatory phenomena in the nature (mechanical vibrations, light, sound, etc.) Of course this was long before the words "matrix" and "vector" appeared. The simplest of these equations is $y''+k^...


8

Apollonius (c. 262–190 BC) "calculated" curvature of conic sections implicitly when solving the problem of drawing normals to them in book V of Conica, but he did not think of it as a property of a curve, and his "calculations" are constructions of segments. The first person to "see" curvature was Oresme (c. 1320-1382), Descartes's precursor in introducing ...


8

Geometry I'm not sure you can really call geometry abandoned, but it certainly was much more popular a few hundred years ago (discovery of spherical geometry and hyperbolical geometry, parallel axiom debate) and a few thousand years ago (the old Greeks developed a lot of geometry). Nowadays, there are very few papers about just plain Euclidean geometry (or ...


8

The theory of branched (or ramified) coverings has its origins in continuation of analytic functions and the attempts to find maximal analytic continuations of a given function. However, certain complex functions, e.g. $f(z) =z^{1/2}$ are multi-valued in certain subdomains of the complex plane, so when trying to continue along the closed curve one might ...


8

The short answer is that you can not find it because it does not exist, Rayleigh never derived the "ultraviolet catastrophe". Chapter VI of Kuhn's book on the history of quantum mechanics reads: "The claim that black-body radiation should conform to the distribution law that has since been variously attributed to Rayleigh and Jeans was not made until 1905. ...


8

Yes, indeed when trying to obtain the law of falling bodies, Galileo's first conjecture was that the speed is proportional to the distance traveled. After some contemplation, Galileo understood that this cannot be the case and eventually came with the correct law. Good source on Galileo: S. Drake, Galileo at work. (There are many editions).


8

Read Klaus Barner's article Pierre de Fermat (1601? – 1665): His life beside mathematics (pages 12–16).


7

Presumably the recognition that water, ice and vapor are different states of the same substance goes back to prehistoric times: e.g. boiling water over a fire or observing the melting of ice. The early history of the phase diagram in physics is connected to Gibbs, Maxwell and van der Waals: the van der Waals equation (1873) implies that there are coexisting ...


7

It is hard to imagine a book like Bell's one written about modern mathematicians, but a nice substitute is some mathematicians autobiographies. Some outstanding examples are those of Andre Weil, Laurent Schwartz, Walter Rudin.


7

Here is a link to online version in German. As for the English translation, according to Milena Wazeck's Einstein's Opponents: The Public Controversy about the Theory of Relativity "nothing ever came of an English language version of 100 Autoren - no such book exists". This is despite the fact that Reuterdahl (one of the contributors) and Ruckhaber (one of ...


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