A computing scientist’s approach to a once-deep theorem of Sylvester’s

  • Edsger W. Dijkstra
Conference paper
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 55)


Well, actually it wasn’t Sylvester’s theorem, it was only his conjecture — dating from the year 1893 -, and it remained so for more than 40 years until T. Gallai (alias Grünwald) “finally succeeded, using a rather complicated argument” [Coxeter]. We shall derive (essentially) the simple argument of L.M. Kelly (1948).


Variant Function Euclidean Plane Simple Argument Chess Play Proof Sketch 
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  1. Coxeter, FRS, H.S.M. “Introduction to Geometry”, 2nd ed., John Wiley & Sons, Inc. New York etc., pp 65–66Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edsger W. Dijkstra
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. of Computer SciencesThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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