MATH
Thought for the Day!
G. D.
Birkhoff on the rivalry between Princeton and Harvard in the glory days
of the 1940s.
Birkhoff: "What's
new down at Princeton?"
Lefschetz:
"Well, one of our visitors solved the fourcolor problem
the other day."
Birkhoff:
"I doubt it but if it's true I"ll go on my knees from the
railroad station to Fine Hall."
Birkhoff never had to do this; the number of fallacious proofs of the fourcolor problem is, of course, legion.
The distance from Fine Hall to the "Dinky" is about one mile. 
Fine Hall at Princeton University in April, 2003 before recent construction forced loss of the beautiful cherry trees.




Mathematical People. Profiles and
Interviews, ed. Donald J. Albers and G. L. Alexanderson,
Boston: Birkhäuser, 1985, pp. 1213.
