My name is Gil Kalai and I am a mathematician working mainly in the field of Combinatorics.  Within combinatorics, I work mainly on geometric combinatorics and the study of convex polytopes and related objects, and on the analysis of Boolean functions and related matters. I am a professor at the Einstein Institute of Mathematics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the Efi Arazy School of Computer Science at IDC, Herzliya. I also have a long-term visiting position at the departments of Computer Science and Mathematics at Yale University, New Haven.  My homepage contains more information about my research, teaching, former students and collaborators, and some pictures, none of which is as symmetric as this one:







Gosset polytope– a hand drawing by Peter McMullen of the plane projection of the 8-dimensional 4-simplicial 4-simple Gosset polytope.

More about me and the purpose of this blog can be found in the very first post.

27 Responses to About

  1. Pingback: Quantum gravity evidence « Gauge theory mechanisms

  2. rjlipton says:


    what do you use to generate the latex for your posts?

  3. Gil Kalai says:

    Dear Dick, I use the very basic wordpress option I write the formula starting with the word latex between two dollar signs, and then pray. For example, if I put “latex NP \ne P” between two dollar signs (deleting the “s) I will get, hold your breath, NP \ne P


    • JCummings says:


      What do you use to generate your graphs? Do you use some other program and bring it in as a JPEG or something? Or can you do it more directly somehow? I am starting a combinatorics blog of my own and am wondering what the best way is.

      Thanks for your help and for this blog!

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  5. William Lee says:

    Our website Science.org is a informational databases and online news publication for anything and everything related to science and technology. We recently ran a poll asking our website users regarding what online informational resources they use to keep up to date or even to simply find great information. It seems many of our users have labeled your blog as an excellent source of Space information. We have reviewed your blog and must say, we absolutely love the information you have made available to the public and would love to make your blog a part of our top science blogs. After browsing your blog, our research team has decided to award you a Top science Blogs award banner.

  6. Jessica Hartley says:

    Hi there,

    I do hope this finds you well.

    I was wondering if you might be able to help me. I am trying to find a German polymath who might be happy to be interviewed on the below programme about Goethe and other notable German polymaths of the past. Filming would be at the end of January/beginning of February.

    Liberty Bell Productions are making a programme about German Culture for the BBC. Primary focus will be on 18th and 19th century arts and culture ranging from Bach to Bauhaus, Beethoven to the Brandenburg Gate, Wagner to Weimar Classicism.

    I look forward to hearing from you – thanks so much.

  7. Pingback: Massively Collaborative Mathematics: lessons from polymath1 « Hypios – Thinking

  8. I am really happy to find such an interesting blog, I found you trough friendfeed here:http://friendfeed.com/spaceweaver/04ab8654/first-evidence-that-quantum-processes, I thought your reflections where really interesting.
    I am AI researcher mainly, but I am interested in math mainly, for example I tweet things such as:Discuss:”Can you link Gödel’s incompleteness theorems with turing’s Halting problem? do they refer to metaSelfReference blindspot/paradox?”, and in my blog I talk about things such as, http://singyourownlullaby.blogspot.com/2009/02/what-is-mathematics.html (what is mathematics) among other things.
    Hope we could stay in touch and exchange information eventually.

  9. Thanks for the blog and posts.
    The”Gosset polytope” in this post is amazing!
    That can be drawn by hand!?!
    Looks like I should make my mathematics study rapid so that I can also draw such amazing 8-D figures.

  10. Gaurav says:

    Dear Sir! I’m an under graduate student of math and physics from India. First time I read or heard or learnt about the word combinatorics at your site today. It is almost a strange topic for me. But as I usually do, I planned to read about you and then to wander across posts of your site. Seems an ocean of knowledge. Let see how much knowledge I can carry…?

  11. Hello Gil,

    Something unrelated to any specific post. I just noticed that in your blogroll, ‘Tamya Khovanova Math Blog’ is misspelled. It is Tanya instead of Tamya.

    GK: Many thanks, corrected

  12. Pingback:     Przypadkowa matematykla – wpis wtóry | FIKSACJE

  13. Hello Gil,

    I am currently running a crowd funding campaign for my upcoming educational game Sweet Math. I was wondering what is the process to get a story out on your blog.

    Here’s more information about the game itself: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/89952638/sweet-math


    For those of you who think education is a key to make the world a better place check out our educational game Sweet Math. We are currently at 69% of our funding goal and the campaign will end on November 14th. We accept donation for as low as $1. http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/89952638/sweet-math

    The game let player practice arithmetics with their entire family.

  14. Shalom,

    As a possibly unrelated question just out of curiosity:

    Who is the guy sitting beside you in the picture above your blog? He seems to be a mathematician. Right? Sorry for my ignorance if he is a well-known person and my question is off-topic.

  15. Patrice Ossona de Mendez says:

    Taking advantage of this particular day (2nd of October), I wish you a great +1

  16. Pingback: Differential Logic • Comment 1 | Inquiry Into Inquiry

  17. Hi Gil,

    I’m the Community  Manager with Anagram Interactive, where we specialize in connecting  established brands with prominent bloggers. We are currently running a campaign for one of the top online stationery brands that you and your readers might find very interesting.
    Please let me know if this is something you’d be interested in and I’ll show you how to get started. Please kindly write to me at helen@anagraminteractive.com

  18. I was linked here by a reddit post on a related topic. thank you for your masterful exposition.

  19. Pingback: Abduction, Deduction, Induction, Analogy, Inquiry : 26 | Inquiry Into Inquiry

  20. Pingback: Abduction, Deduction, Induction, Analogy, Inquiry : 27 | Inquiry Into Inquiry

  21. anonymousskimmer says:

    I just recently stumbled on the Scott Aaronson Comment #171 topic, and am reading through it.
    Thank you very much for what you wrote there about “There is a huge numbers of kids who greatly suffer because of their academic performances. And, of course, like in our case here, suffering and great frustration from academic performance is not limited to those who are very disable but also to those who are able and are obsessed with wanting to achieve more.”: https://www.scottaaronson.com/blog/?p=2119#comment-360909

    I’m a straight male, and was a moderately gifted student (top 2%+, on average). During high school I never dated, or even expressed interest in girls, not because of internalized feminism, but because I didn’t want to change the nature of any friendships I had (I had such a crush on this one girl I was friends with), and most importantly didn’t want to give in to those strong urges (it seemed evil to say “no” to my parents, so I rebelled against my own self instead in an irrational attempt to make a deal with the universe). I eventually got over this and had no problem flirting and etcetera as a 20-something adult, and getting married at 28.

    When it came to academics though, I internalized everything society was saying about school, studying, etc….
    – “Graduate from high school or you ruin your life” (Not if you have an associate’s degree from the local community college instead.)
    – “Grades don’t matter, what you learn matters” (No, its the grades that matter. Without them you will never have opportunities to learn more. Plus grades are an actual indication of how much you have learned and retained.)
    – “Talented kids will do fine” (Thanks for the lack of pertinent advice and outreach when I needed it. I thought MIT was a school in Michigan, and didn’t know that university departments specialized.)
    – “Places like Caltech, Georgia Tech, etc… are for the phenomenally brilliant who are inventing in their teens” (Thanks “Real Genius” and other pop-culture movies and shows. No, those who invent and research in their teens are typically the children of working scientists or professionals who are being mentored by their parents or some family connection, or are in a special program only accessible by those living in big cities. The prestigious universities have places for kids without these benefits.)
    – The assumption that students are blank slates (The anger from requiring that I take certain classes at the opportunity cost of not being able to take classes I was interested in, and felt would have made me a better scientist.)
    – And finally and most importantly the profound depression that came with knowing I wasn’t learning as much as I could have been thanks to my bad study habits. Said depression exacerbating the bad study habits and leading to dropping out of school entirely.

    It took 17 years and 5 institutions for me to finish a B.S. degree at the age of 34 (I received a 2-year degree at the age of 29). Even then I would have dropped out again only two required courses shy if my wife hadn’t insisted I finish. I’ll be entering a Master’s program as a 42 year old, and will hopefully have a Ph.D. around the age of 46 or 47, thanks to a supportive employer. If I’m fortunate in job applications this will give me two, maybe two and a half decades of work as a lower-level scientist. What I will never have is the opportunity to profess to students in my situation (with the exception of the occasional intern), the way Scott Aaronson has the ability to profess to “shy nerds” in his teenage position.

    So thank you very much for not forgetting about people like me, and of course those with lesser intellectual gifts who have it even harder. Professors who realize that people like me exist are few in number, and I’ve met exactly one professor who confessed to dropping out of school once.

  22. Pingback: Animated Logical Graphs • 54 | Inquiry Into Inquiry

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