Year of Award: 2005
Publication Information: The American Mathematical Monthly, vol. 111, no. 3, March 2004, pp. 361-385.
Summary: This paper proves an interesting factorization theorem for a family of square matrices built from Pascal's triangle in a natural way.
About the Author(s): (from The American Mathematical Monthly, v. 111, no. 3, (2004)
Alan Edelman, a lifelong lover of linear algebra, recently celebrated his fortieth birthday with a cake bought by his wife with icing Ax = λx. He earned a B.S. and M.S. at Yale University and a Ph.D. at MIT, where he has been teaching since 1993. He has also spent three years at UC Berkeley. Edelman's thesis on random matrices was supervised by Nick Trefethen (and a book is in progress). Random matrices, parallel computing, and numerical linear algebra remain passions. He has shared a Gordon Bell Prize for parallel computing, a Householder Prize for numerical linear algebra, and the MAA's Chauvenet Prize.
Gilbert Strang was an undergraduate at MIT and a Rhodes Scholar at Balliol College, Oxford. His Ph.D. was from UCLA and since then he has taught at MIT. He was President of SIAM in 1999-2000 and is chair of the U.S. National Committee on Mathematics. He can't stop teaching and writing textbooks: Introduction to Linear Algebra (1993, 1998, 2003), Linear Algebra and Its Applications (1976, 1983, 1988), Introduction to Applied Mathematics (1986), and Calculus (1991). The publisher is always Wellesley-Cambridge Press, except Brooks/Cole for the earlier linear algebra book. His other books (with wonderful coauthors) are just linear algebra in disguise: An Analysis of the Finite Element Method (1973), Wavelets and Filter Banks (1996), and Linear Algebra, Geodesy, and GPS (1997).