# Opinion 13: It is Time to Correct Gloria Olive's
Erroneous Math Review of Shalosh B. Ekhad's Beautiful Proof
of Dixon's Identity'

## By: Doron Zeilberger

Written: Jan. 12, 1997

Unlike my other opinions, the present one concerns a personal
matter, involving my beloved servant,
Shalosh B. Ekhad,
and how it was wronged by Math Reviews and its electronic
analog, MathSci. It is a plea for correcting this
five-year-old crime.
In addition to being posted here, it is being sent to
John Ewing, Executive Director of the American Mathematical
Society, and I hope that very shortly I will be able to
report that my suggested remedy has been implemented.

About five years ago, Volker Strehl pointed my attention, and
that of Math Reviews, to Gloria Olive's completely erroneous
Math Review MR 91b#05021 . It asserted that
Ekhad's beautiful proof `lacked validity'. Even though this
grave error was reported in the errata section of that year
in the paper version of MR (amongst minor errors and misprints
that I am sure nobody reads), the correction never made it
to MathSci.

I was shocked, when I searched MathSci for
Ekhad's papers, that this erroneous review is still
posted, thereby misleading the mathematical community and
slandering Shalosh.
Thus an innocent user who searches for proofs of
Dixon's identity, or for all the papers of Ekhad, would be
grossly misinformed.

The beauty of computers, as opposed to
print, is that it is easy to correct errors. It would be a trivial
matter to replace Olive's false review with a new one, stating
that it replaces an earlier erroneous one.

Another beauty of the computer age is that I can make
Shalosh's grievance and MathSci's error viewable to the
Whole Wide World. Even if they would refuse to correct
their error, the present webpage is already correcting it,
and at the same time warning the reader to be skeptical of
everything they read, EVEN MATH REVIEWS! While I am sure
that there are relatively few such blatant errors, there
must be many misjudgements and wrong opinions expressed.

Added Jan. 16, 1997: Here is
John Ewing's Almost Satisfactory Reply.

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