Sir Wiles’ Life Story
Andrew John Wiles was born on April 11th, 1953 to parents Maurice Frank Wiles, a Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford University, and Patricia Wiles. He was born in Cambridge, England and went to King’s College and The Leys School. Wiles graduated from Merton College in 1974 with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. In 1980, he earned a PhD at Clare College in Cambridge. Wiles became a professor at Princeton University soon after and in 1988, he became a Royal Society Research Professor at Oxford University before returning to Princeton. He is currently 59 years old, married to Nada Canaan Wiles, who has a PhD in microbiology. They live in Oxford with their three daughters Clare, Kate and Olivia. He remains a citizen of the United Kingdom.
How He Discovered It
When he was 10, he discovered Fermat’s Last Theorem on his way home from school. He stopped by his local library where he found a book about Fermat’s theorem. He thought the theorem was so easy to understand that he decided to be the first to prove it. It wasn’t until 1986 when he heard Rivet had proved Serre’s e-conjecture and so he made a connection between Fermat’s Last Theorem and the Taniyama- Shimura conjecture. Beginning in the summer of 1975, Wiles and his fellow colleague, John Coates, began to work together on the arithmetic of elliptic curves with complex multiplication by the methods of Iwasawa theory. He also worked with Barry Mazur on Iwasawa theory over rational numbers.
Fermat’s Last Theorem
Fermat’s Last Theorem states that no three positive integers a, b, and c can satisfy the equation an + bn = cn for any integer value of n that’s greater than two. Pierre de Fermat speculated this theorem in 1637. Fermat only left the proof of...