What is conjecture?

  • (noun): Reasoning that involves the formation of conclusions from incomplete evidence.
    See also — Additional definitions below


A conjecture is a proposition that is unproven. Karl Popper pioneered the use of the term "conjecture" in scientific philosophy. Conjecture is contrasted by hypothesis (hence theory, axiom, principle), which is a testable statement based on accepted grounds. In mathematics, a conjecture is an unproven proposition that appears correct.

Read more about Conjecture.

Some articles on conjecture:

Manifold Destiny - Controversy
... on Yau's alleged stake in the Poincaré conjecture, its view that Yau was unfairly taking credit away from Perelman, and its depiction of Yau's supposed involvement in past ... account of the history of the Ricci flow approach to the Poincaré conjecture, saying he was very disturbed by the unfair manner in which Yau had been ... Science Magazine honored Perelman's proof of the Poincaré Conjecture as the scientific "Breakthrough of the Year", the first time this had been bestowed in the area of mathematics ...
Lonely Runner Conjecture
... especially the study of diophantine approximation, the lonely runner conjecture is a conjecture originally due to J ... Applications of the conjecture are widespread in mathematics they include view obstruction problems and calculating the chromatic number of distance graphs ... The conjecture was given its picturesque name by L ...
Sharp Six Exponentials Theorem
... although it as yet unproven so is known as the sharp five exponentials conjecture ... This conjecture implies both the sharp six exponentials theorem and the five exponentials theorem, and is stated as follows ... A consequence of this conjecture that isn't currently known would be the transcendence of eπ², by setting x1 = y1 = β11 = 1, x2 = y2 = iπ, and all the other values in the statement to be zero ...
Undecidable Conjectures
... Not every conjecture ends up being proven true or false ... The continuum hypothesis, which tries to ascertain the relative cardinality of certain infinite sets, was eventually shown to be undecidable (or independent) from the generally accepted set of axioms of set theory ...
Additive Number Theory
... Two classical problems of this type are the Goldbach conjecture (which is the conjecture that 2P contains all even numbers greater than two, where P is the set of primes) and Waring's problem (which ... This is the content of the Erdős–Turán conjecture on additive bases ...

More definitions of "conjecture":

  • (noun): A hypothesis that has been formed by speculating or conjecturing (usually with little hard evidence).
    Example: "He dismissed it as mere conjecture"
    Synonyms: speculation

Famous quotes containing the word conjecture:

    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    What these perplexities of my uncle Toby were,—’tis impossible for you to guess;Mif you could,—I should blush ... as an author; inasmuch as I set no small store by myself upon this very account, that my reader has never yet been able to guess at any thing. And ... if I thought you was able to form the least ... conjecture to yourself, of what was to come in the next page,—I would tear it out of my book.
    Laurence Sterne (1713–1768)