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David Hilbert

Hilbert, David, (1862–1943), German mathematician, professor at Königsberg (1886–95) and Göttingen (1895–1930), b. Königsberg, Germany. His proof of the theorum of invariants (1890) supplanted earlier computational work on the subject and paved the way for modern algebraic geometry. His report on algebraic number theory (1897) inspired many of the subsequent developments in that area, and he also made significant contributions to multivariable calculus, theoretical physics, mathematical logic, and Euclidean geometry. At the International Mathematical Congress in Paris (1900), he put forth 23 research problems, which launched much of the research agenda of 20th-century mathematics; some of the problems remain unsolved.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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