‘Futurama’ — The Geekiest Show on TV

Wired story on the return of Futurama, and producer David X. Cohen:

In a 1995 Simpsons episode, Cohen devised an equation that appears briefly behind Homer Simpson:

178212 + 184112 = 192212

The equation appears to be a counterexample to a famous mathematical statement, Fermat’s Last Theorem. Pierre de Fermat had proposed the theorem in 1637, and a proof had only recently been discovered when the episode aired. Cohen wrote a computer program to find near-misses for Fermat’s Last Theorem, equations that were close enough to being true that a person who tapped it into a calculator would be fooled.

The story includes a link to the source code.

Friday, 30 November 2007