Andrew Wiles Facts
Andrew Wiles Facts

Interesting Andrew Wiles Facts: 

Wiles was educated at King's College, Cambridge, and The Leys School, also of Cambridge. 
He tells the story of finding Fermat's Last Theorem as a child when he stopped by the local library on his way home from school. 
He was astonished that he was able to understand the theorem, even at only ten years old, but that something so understandable had never been proven. 
It became his goal to prove the theorem, a goal that would be put aside for more than twenty years. 
After many years as a Royal Society Research Professor, Guggenheim Fellow, and Princeton University professor, Wiles had provided a number of contributions to the understanding of theorems of elliptic curves. 
It was these contributions that led Wiles to his proof of Fermat's theorem, as Wiles saw the proof as nothing more than the corollary of a restricted form of the modularity theorem. 
Despite the concerns of his contemporaries that Fermat's Last Theorem couldn't be proven, Wiles undertook the project once again. 
He spent six years researching the problem in secret, even going so far as to hide his efforts by publishing smaller papers that he'd previously written, throwing off any wonder at his true work. 
In 1993, Wiles presented his proof at a conference in Cambridge, but later that year a flaw was discovered in it. 
He worked for more than a year to repair the proof as he had written it. 
According to him, it was important to circumvent the flaw, rather than try to close it. 
In September of 1994, the solution came to him just as he was about to give up on it. Wiles and a former student, Richard Taylor, published a followup paper which circumvented the problem. 
Both of Wiles' papers proving Fermat's Last Theorem were published in 1995 in the Annals of Mathematics. 
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