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André Sainte-Laguë: Wikis


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André Sainte-Laguë (April 20, 1882 – January 18, 1950) was a French mathematician who was a pioneer in the area of graph theory. His research on seat allocation methods (published in 1910) led to one being named after him, the Sainte-Laguë method. Also named after him is the Sainte-Laguë Index for measuring the proportionality of an electoral outcome.

He is notable for his informal calculation demonstrating that a bumblebee could not fly, referred to in the introduction of 'Le Vol des Insectes' (Hermann and Cle, Paris, 1934) by the entomologist August Magnan. This casual calculation was based on a comparison between an aeroplane and a bee, and assumed that bees' wings were smooth and flat. He, and others, soon corrected this assumption but the story of the scientist who demonstrated that bee flight was impossible persists to this day[1].




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