# I discovered a formula for the nth term of any sequence of numbers..

by karpmage
Tags: discovered, formula, numbers, sequence, term
 Mentor P: 18,345 Or basically just google "finite sequence". Here is a blog by Terrence Tao who uses the term: http://terrytao.wordpress.com/2007/0...nce-principle/
 Sci Advisor HW Helper P: 9,499 i don't think so. i have one in mind whose nth term is ??????
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P: 13,135
 Quote by Vargo If you carefully read the original post, you would see that there is no intrinsic flaw in his claim. He is not trying to create a nonsense formula for the nth term in a sequence given a list of the first k terms. Instead he has a finite sequence u_1, ...., u_n. Given those numbers, he finds an explicit polynomial P(n) such that P(i)=u_i. There is no infinite sequence and it has nothing to do with pattern recognition. It is simply a polynomial interpolation and that is all he is claiming.
The formula in the first post is not the one OP had in mind - that was posted later. That didn't help matters.
 If the original post were not clear (which is understandable since the OP is not trained in maths), surely some of the follow up posts would have cleared this up??
Yet so many people are responding as if the claim is that the formula is predicting the next term in the intended sequence. Like:
 Quote by mathwonk i don't think so. i have one in mind whose nth term is ??????
... I don't think OP is actually claiming to be able to predict the next term in mathwonk's sequence ... just to be able to come up with "a" next term given what has gone before and the assumptions (reasoning?) built-in to the formula. The formula would be predictive for a particular kind of sequence.

The wording in post #1 is unclear on this point, and muddied, rather than clarified, by crossed wires in later responses, but I think we are at the point where OP can be encouraged to confirm or deny the interpretation unambiguously.

I submit: further discussion is pointless until that happens.
P: 839
 Quote by Simon Bridge The wording in post #1 is unclear on this point, and muddied, rather than clarified, by crossed wires in later responses, but I think we are at the point where OP can be encouraged to confirm or deny the interpretation unambiguously. I submit: further discussion is pointless until that happens.
He already did so, see the start of post #17. This thread is done, and the original poster said so himself in post #20.
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