David Hilbert


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David Hilbert

Born 1862 in Königsberg, Prussia (now Kaliningrad, Russia), died 1942 Göttingen, Germany

Hilbert is probably most famous for the 23 problems that he posed to the Second International Congress of Mathematicians in Paris in 1900, some of which still remain unsolved. As he delivered his speech giving the challenge to the mathematical community which is still thinking and trying to solve some of them, he said:

"The great importance of definite problems for the progress of mathematical sciences in general is undeniable... As long as a branch of knowledge supplies a surplus of such problems, it maintains its vitality... the conviction that every mathematical problem is necessarily capable of strict resolution (makes us to) hear without ouserlves the constant cry: There is the problem, seek the solution. You can find it through pure thought..."

Hilbert is also famous for his work on infinity. Go on a vacation to infinity and back - visit Hilbert Hotel here!

One of the problems that Hilbert challenged mathematicians to solve in Paris 1900, was the famous Fermat's Last Theorem.

Or see the presentation on the Fermat's Last Theorem by clicking on a picture below.

Hilbert was a great friend of Minkowski, another famous mathematician that appears in our Famous Children Gallery.

See more about Hilbert and the Hotel Hilbert here.

Hilbert was born in Königsberg, the place of the famous bridges. See why they are so important in the history of mathematics - click here.

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