The answer to the ultimate question: 42

This is a bit of a larger resolution version of this entry in the Math in movies collection. It is prompted by the recent discovery of a solution to the Diophantine equation x3 + y3 + z3=42 which is x=-80538738812075974;y=80435758145817515;z=12602123297335631;x^3+y^3+z^3 == 42 found by Andrew Booker from the University of Bristol and Andrew Sutherland. There are still quite a few such computational challenges ahead. We don't know an answer to x3 + y3 + z3=k for k=114,165,390,579,627,633,732,795,906,921,975 yet. (Source). See also This exhibit for Math 21, Fall 2019. But of course, nothing is as cool as finding the answer to k=42. We just have to find out what the ultimate question actually is:

M4V, Ogg Webm. imdb link to the Hitchhikers Guide (2005).

Oliver Knill, Posted September 6, 2019,