## Math Is Still Catching Up to the Mysterious Genius of Srinivasa Ramanujan

Ramanujan is perhaps most famous for coming up with partition identities, equations about the different ways you can break a whole number up into smaller parts (such as 7 = 5 + 1 + 1). In the 1980s, mathematicians began to find deep and surprising connections between these equations and other areas of mathematics: in statistical mechanics and the study of phase transitions, in knot theory and string theory, in number theory and representation theory and the study of symmetries.

Most recently, they’ve appeared in Mourtada’s work on curves and surfaces that are defined by algebraic equations, an area of study called algebraic geometry. Mourtada and his collaborators have spent more than a decade trying to better understand that link, and to exploit it to uncover rafts of brand-new identities that resemble those Ramanujan wrote down.