14 April 2010

Mathematical relationships search

There's a mathematical relationships search. It will tell you, for example, that academically, Max Noether is the first cousin of Emmy Noether. (Both of their advisors were students of Jacobi.) But Michael Artin and Emil Artin aren't even related.

It's less amusing, of course, when you search for people that aren't related in the standard way. But Paul Erdos is my great-great-great-great-uncle. (You can't search for me yet in the Mathematics Genealogy Project, which is where the data comes from; the link goes to the relationship between Erdos and another student of my advisor.)


Anonymous said...

I tried Newton and Gauss and got no hits. That made me curious, so I just checked Newton. He has a surprisingly small number of descendents (~7k). What's really funny is that he himself had two, but only one of them had any other descendents. And it isn't until the mid 1800s that any descendent of Newton had more than one descendent himself.

A tradition of isolation or something. Liebniz has ~60k descendents, with multiple "children" even in the first generation.

Zeke said...

The best part is this: only a finite number of humans have ever lived, much less studied mathematics. So if you ascend back through all of the Noethers' "ancestors", any such chain will eventually terminate.