FOM: Poincare and Mathematical Creation

Steve Stevenson steve at
Tue Dec 11 11:29:28 EST 2001

Newman includes the text of a talk by Poincare titled "Mathematical
Creation" in volume 4 of the *The World of Mathematics.* Newman simply
notes that it was a talk to the Pyschological Society of Paris. I
would assume that I can get the full bibliographic reference from a
collection of his works.

I'd appreciate references to this area mathematical
"discovery". The first task is to figure out where we are in
understanding how scientists and mathematicians "solve" things.

Hadamard wrote *The psychology of invention in the mathematical field*
in 1945; this is listed in the PsycheNet database. Polya's *How to
solve it* and subsequent work would fall into this category, too, I
think. I would assume that somewhere after Poincare is when the
psychologists picked up the thread of problems solving. Checking
MRnet, there seems to be various titles with "psychology" and terms
like problem-solving and discovery. Some of these are artificial
intelligence papers, some education, some mathematics.

Thanks in advance


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