Whoever can solve a problem that has been dogging mathematicians since the 1980s could be $1 million richer, courtesy of a Texas banker who made the offering this week, according to The Associated Press.
The Providence, R.I.-based American Mathematical Society on Tuesday said $1 million will be awarded for the publication of a solution to the Beal Conjecture number theory problem.
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Dallas banker D. Andrew Beal first offered the Beal Prize in 1997 for $5,000. Over the years, the amount has grown.
American Mathematical Society spokesman Michael Breen says a solution is more difficult than the one for a related problem, Fermat's Last Theorem, which didn't have a published solution for hundreds of years.
Beal, a self-taught mathematician, says he wants to inspire young people to pursue math and science.
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