Polymath is a collective open way of doing mathematics. It started over Gowers’s blog with the polymath1 project that was devoted to the Density Hales Jewett problem. Since then we had Polymath2 related to Tsirelson spaces in Banach space theory , an intensive Polymath4 devoted to deterministically finding primes that took place on a special polymathblog, a miniPolymath leading to collectively solving an olympiad problem, and an intensive Polymath5 devoted to the Erdos discrepency problem which is running as we speak. We have a plan for resuming Polymath3 (which had some initial rounds of discussions) which is devoted to diameter of polytopes over this blog. There are several proposed projects on the polymath blog and on Gowers’s blog. The polymath concept was mentioned as an example of a new way of collaborating and doing science and it got some blogs and media attention.

This post is an invitation for some reflections and thoughts about the polymath idea and how it goes. What do you think?

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You have to choose the problem carefully in order for it to work.

It helps if their is a very clear plan of attack available and if the problem can benefit from a lot of computation (so probably combinatorial in some way).

It seems challenging to find many really interesting problems that meet these criteria.

who will be the clearing house

its hard to read anyway

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