Sponsored by the Rutgers University Department of Mathematics and the
Center for Discrete Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science (DIMACS)

Brian Nakamura, Rutgers University, bnaka {at} math [dot] rutgers [dot] edu
Doron Zeilberger, Rutgers University, zeilberg {at} math [dot] rutgers [dot] edu

Title: A Case Study In Early 21st-Century Mathematical Narrow-Mindedness: How a "Non-Rigorous", but ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN Disproof of a 45-Year Old Conjecture Made by One of the Greatest Number Theorists of the 20th Century Got Rejected By Three Journals

Speaker: Doron Zeilberger, Rutgers University

Date: Thursday, February 23, 2012 5:00pm

Location: Hill Center, Room 705, Rutgers University, Busch Campus, Piscataway, NJ


I will tell the sad (but funny!) story how the beautiful refutation by Drew Sills and myself, of a long-standing conjecture by Hans Rademacher, got rejected by three journals. First we (naively!) submitted it to George Andrews, Rademacher's "Benjamin" (see the bottom of this page) for the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, who rejected it because it was "only experimental". Then we submitted it to Mathematics of Computation (see its editorial board), who rejected it because, while "interesting", it "does not meet the `high' standards of the journal, since it is 'only computational'". Finally we submitted it to the journal Experimental Mathematics (see its editorial board), that when it was founded, was a breath of fresh air, but in recent times, under the current editor-in-chief, has deterioated into "J. of Algorithmic Algebraic Geometry", who once again rejected our masterpiece, ostensibly because it "does not ring with enduring significance" (whatever that means), but most probably because it was "only experimental".

See: http://www.math.rutgers.edu/~bnaka/expmath/