Ken Appel has died

The Times has a very nice obituary of Kenneth Appel, the main mastermind behind the proof of the four-color theorem, one of the crowning achievements of graph theory. He also sounds likfair pleasant, interesting man. The advent of computers has revolutionized the practice of mathematics (there is hardly a problem I try to solve without extensive computer exploration), and Appel was a pioneer in using artificial computation to make the intractable, tractable.

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