Imagine you have a square-shaped room, and inside there is an assassin and a target. And suppose that any shot that the assassin takes can ricochet off the walls of the room, just like a ball on a billiard table. Is it possible to position a finite number of security guards inside the square so that they block every possible shot from the assassin to the target?
Symmetric keys are essential to encrypting messages. How can two people share the same key without someone else getting a hold of it? Upfront asymmetric encryption is one way, but another is Diffie-Hellman key exchange.
In the physical world, many seemingly basic things turn out to be built from even more basic things. Molecules are made of atoms, atoms are made of protons, neutrons, and electrons. So what are numbers made of?
Imagine you have four cubes, whose faces are colored red, blue, yellow, and green. Can you stack these cubes so that each color appears exactly once on each of the four sides of the stack?
What shape do you most associate with a standard analog clock? Your reflex answer might be a circle, but a more natural answer is actually a torus. Surprised? Then stick around.
Infinities come in different sizes. There’s a whole tower of progressively larger "sizes of infinity". So what’s the right way to describe the size of the whole tower?