As usual, I’ll start this post by mentioning the current state of the bounded gaps between primes project. The current values are , with an unconfirmed result giving a value of H below 5000. It’s surprising how far these sieve methods are successfully being pushed — significantly below Ben Green’s estimate that 10000 would be the limit.
Anyway, the 54th International Mathematical Olympiad finished a few days ago. There are no prizes for guessing which country came first (China), closely followed by South Korea. The United Kingdom came first in the EU and ninth in the world, which is the best result since 1996. Congratulations go to Geoff Smith for leading the team, Dominic Yeo for acquiring refreshments (and the other things that deputy leaders do), and especially to the six excellent contestants* who, between them, attained two gold medals, three silvers and a bronze. This is an excellent achievement!
* In lexicographical order by surname, they are Andrew Carlotti, Gabriel Gendler, Daniel Hu, Sahl Khan, Warren Li and Matei Mandache. Andrew is now the country’s most prolific IMO contestant, with three gold medals and a bronze. Our other triple gold medallists are John Rickard (c.f. Treefoil) and Simon Norton (co-discoverer of the Harada-Norton sporadic group).
The next impending mathematical Olympiad worthy of mention is the Mathematical Olympiad for Girls (or MOG), which is used for finding the UK EGMO team. I’ll be mentioning it closer to the time, combined in an article with the Miracle Octad Generator (purely on the basis that they have the same acronym). I think that my recommendation that medals and certificates be awarded as opposed to gold stickers on returned scripts has been effected, although if this is not the case and you have been affected by this issue, do not hesitate to contact me.
In other news, Stuart Gascoigne recently overtook Joseph Myers on the cipher-solving leaderboard.