The University of Michigan Combinatorics Seminar
Fall 2007
November 30, 4:10-5:00, 3866 East Hall

Plank and coefficient problems

Keith Ball

University College London


The plank problem of Tarski asks whether it is possible to cover a hole of diameter 1 with planks whose total width is less than 1. I will explain the solution of the problem and its modern developments including a very general solution of the coefficient problem in harmonic analysis. The methods are a mixture of analysis and combinatorics.