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АxЦИАxЦД?xЦААCarl Gauss
By Tom Eastman
Carl Friedrich Gauss was born on April 30th in 1777 he was a German mathematician who dominated the mathematical community during and afterhis lifetime. A child prodigy, Gauss taught himself reading and arithmetic by the age of three. Recognizing his talent, the Duke of Brunswick in 1792 provided him with a stipend to allow him to pursue his education. While still attending Caroline College (1792-95), Gauss formulated the least-squares method and a conjecture on the distribution of prime numbers among all numbers; the latter was proved by Jacques Hadamard in 1896. During this period, Gauss did not have access to a good mathematical library and therefore rediscovered many theorems that had already been accepted. The situation changed in 1795, when he went to Gottingen with its excellent library.
In 1795, Gauss discovered the fundamental theorem of quadratic residues, which deals with the concept of congruence in number theory. In 1796 he made his first mark as a serious mathematician by proving the possibility of constructing a regular 17-sided polygon using only a ruler and acompass. The next 4 years were very productive. Ideas came to him so rapidly that he could pursue only some of them. In 1799 the University of Helmstedt granted Gauss a Ph.D. degree for a dissertation that gave the first proof of the fundamental theorem of algebra.
Gauss had two major achievements in 1801. The first was the publication of his Disquisitiones arithmeticae, a treatise on number theory, which contained his solutions to many outstanding problems. This book set the pattern for future research and won Gauss major recognition among mathematicians. The second was caused by the discovery of the asteroid Ceres. It had been briefly observed in January 1801 but had then disappeared
from view. Gauss computed the orbit using an improved theory and predicted where and when Ceres would reappear. When the prediction was proved correct, Gauss's fame spread far and wide. He subsequently accepted a financially secure position as astronomer at the Gottingen Observatory.
To fulfill his sense of civic responsibility, Gauss undertook a geodetic survey of his country and did much of the field work himself. In his theoretical work on surveying, Gauss developed results he needed from statistics and differential geometry. During the 1820s, with the collaboration of the physicist Wilhelm Weber, he explored many areas of physics, including magnetism, mechanics, acoustics, and optics. In 1833 he constructed the first telegraph. Gauss's publications were polished and finished works that opened new paths for investigation and contained the seeds of much future work. To date 12 volumes have been published.
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