Math & Cultural
Join MSRI's director David Eisenbud for a Bay Area premiere screening of Counting from Infinity: Yitang Zhang and the Twin Prime Conjecture, a 56-minute feature film directed by George Csicsery and produced by MSRI.
Thursday, May 21, 2015, 7 p.m.
Rialto Cinemas Elmwood
2966 College Avenue (at Ashby), Berkeley
Tickets are $11 general admission, and $8.50 for seniors, children, and students with ID. Doors open at 6:45 p.m. More info is here.
About the film:
In April 2013, a lecturer at the University of New Hampshire submitted a paper to the Annals of Mathematics. Within weeks word spread—a little-known mathematician, with no permanent job, working in complete isolation had made an important breakthrough towards solving the Twin Prime Conjecture. Yitang Zhang’s techniques for bounding the gaps between primes soon led to rapid progress by the Polymath Group, and a further innovation by James Maynard.
The film is a study of Yitang Zhang’s rise from obscurity and a disadvantaged youth to mathematical celebrity. The story of Zhang’s quiet perseverance amidst adversity, and his preference for thinking and working in solitude, is interwoven with a history of the Twin Prime Conjecture as told by several mathematicians, many of whom have wrestled with this enormously challenging problem in Number Theory—Daniel Goldston, Kannan Soundararajan, Andrew Granville, Peter Sarnak, Enrico Bombieri, James Maynard, Nicholas Katz, David Eisenbud, Ken Ribet, and Terry Tao.
George Paul Csicsery, a writer and independent filmmaker since 1968, has directed 33 films, many about the lives and work of mathematicians. His best-known documentaries are N is a Number: a Portrait of Paul Erdös (1993), Julia Robinson and Hilbert’s Tenth Problem (2008), Hard Problems (2008), Hungry for Monsters (2004), and Where the Heart Roams (1987).
The film’s web site is countingfrominfinityfilm.com.
The film is produced through the generous support of the Simons Foundation.