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Erica Klarreich

Freelance Mathematics and Science Journalist

Berkeley, California

Erica Klarreich

My work has appeared in Quanta, Nature, The Atlantic, New Scientist, Science News, Wired and many other publications, and has been reprinted in the 2010, 2011, and 2016 volumes of "The Best Writing on Mathematics."

klarreic@nasw.org
@EricaKlarreich

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Decades-Old Computer Science Conjecture Solved in Two Pages

July 25, 2019 — A paper posted online this month has settled a nearly 30-year-old conjecture about the structure of the fundamental building blocks of computer circuits. This “sensitivity” conjecture has stumped many of the most prominent computer scientists over the years, yet the new proof is so simple that one researcher summed it up in a single tweet.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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53-Year-Old Network Coloring Conjecture Is Disproved

June 17, 2019 — In just three pages, a Russian mathematician has presented a better way to color certain types of networks than many experts thought possible.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Out of a Magic Math Function, One Solution to Rule Them All

May 13, 2019 — Mathematicians have used “magic functions” to prove that two highly symmetric lattices solve a myriad of problems in eight- and 24-dimensional space.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Karen Uhlenbeck, Uniter of Geometry and Analysis, Wins Abel Prize

March 19, 2019 — A founder of modern geometric analysis who produced “some of the most dramatic advances in mathematics in the last 40 years,” Uhlenbeck is the first woman to be awarded this top honor.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Math Duo Maps the Infinite Terrain of Minimal Surfaces

March 12, 2019 — A pair of mathematicians has built on an obscure, 30-year-old mathematical theory to show that soap-filmlike minimal surfaces appear abundantly in a wide range of shapes.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Jean Bourgain (1954–2018)

February 6, 2019 — Over the course of a wildly prolific career, Belgian mathematician Jean Bourgain would repeatedly enter some area, solve several of its outstanding problems and create an entirely new field of study in the process.
Nature Link to Story
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A Collector of Math and Physics Surprises

November 27, 2018 — Tadashi Tokieda lives in a world in which ordinary objects do extraordinary things. Jars of rice refuse to roll down ramps. Strips of paper slip past solid obstacles. Balls swirling inside a bowl switch direction when more balls join them. Yet Tokieda’s world is none other than our own. His public mathematics lectures could easily be mistaken for magic shows, but there’s no sleight of hand, no hidden compartments, no trick deck of cards.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Mystery Math Whiz and Novelist Advance Permutation Problem

November 5, 2018 — A new proof from the Australian science fiction writer Greg Egan and a 2011 proof anonymously posted online are now being hailed as significant advances on a puzzle mathematicians have been studying for at least 25 years.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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Titans of Mathematics Clash Over Epic Proof of ABC Conjecture

Sept 20, 2018 — Two mathematicians have found what they say is a hole at the heart of a proof that has convulsed the mathematics community for nearly six years.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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A Number Theorist Who Bridges Math and Time

August 1, 2018 — Akshay Venkatesh, a former prodigy who struggled with the genius stereotype, has won a Fields Medal for his “profound contributions to an exceptionally broad range of subjects in mathematics.”
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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A Master of Numbers and Shapes Who Is Rewriting Arithmetic

August 1, 2018 — The 30-year-old math sensation Peter Scholze is now one of the youngest Fields medalists for “the revolution that he launched in arithmetic geometry.”
Quanta Magazine Link to Story
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First Big Steps Toward Proving the Unique Games Conjecture

April 25, 2018 — A paper posted online in January takes theoretical computer scientists halfway toward proving one of the biggest conjectures in their field.
Quanta Magazine Link to Story

About

Erica Klarreich

I have been writing about mathematics and science for a popular audience for more than fifteen years. A mathematician before I became a full-time journalist, I try to convey the essence of complex mathematical ideas to non-mathematicians, and give them a sense of the beauty and depth of mathematics.

I also enjoy plunging into topics far from my mathematical roots, and have written about fields such as economics, computer science, medicine, and biology — often as these fields relate to mathematics, but often simply for their own sake.

As a freelance journalist based in Berkeley, California, I have written for many publications, including Nature, Quanta Magazine, ScientificAmerican.com, New Scientist, American Scientist, Wired.com, Nautilus, and Science News, for which I was the mathematics correspondent for several years. I was also the Journalist in Residence at the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in Berkeley. My work has been reprinted in the 2010, 2011, and 2016 volumes of "The Best Writing on Mathematics."

I am a graduate of the science writing program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and I have a Ph.D. in mathematics from Stony Brook University.

For the Fall 2016 semester, I was the Journalist in Residence at the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing at the University of California, Berkeley.

Contact me at klarreic@nasw.org.

Follow me on Twitter at @EricaKlarreich