Since my acceptance into a dissertation program in July 1998, I have been meticulous in
annotating my reading and, in my writing, crediting ideas and phrases to their authors.
But for the 60 years prior, I read widely, without scholarly intent, and absorbed ideas
and even wordings which I can no longer attribute to their source. I would be grateful to
learn of any citation I've overlooked.
Speaking of his Erdos biography, Schecter noted that his
goals, like the standards for a math proof, are elegance, authority, clarity,
inevitability, and simplicity. And, he said, his writing, like a proof, must be no longer
than it needs to be to show its insight (Schecter). This is a wonderful articulation of a
standard I adopt.
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