Can be finite or infinite! TODO examples. But it is always a finitely generated group.
The number of points may be either finite or infinite. But when infinite, it is still a finitely generated group.
For this reason, the rank of an elliptic curve over the rational numbers is always defined.
TODO example.
Mordell's theorem guarantees that the rank (number of elements in the generating set of the group) is always well defined for an elliptic curve over the rational numbers. But as of 2023 there is no known algorithm which calculates the rank of any curve!
TODO list of known values and algorithms? The Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture would immediately provide a stupid algorithm for it. gives a list with Elkies (2006) on top with:
TODO why this non standard formluation?
This construction taks as input:and it produces an elliptic curve over a finite field of order as output.
The constructions is used in the Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture.
To do it, we just convert the coefficients and from the Equation "Definition of the elliptic curves" from rational numbers to elements of the finite field.
For example, suppose we have and we are using .
For the denominator , we just use the multiplicative inverse, e.g. supposing we have
where because , related:
The BSD conjecture states that if your name is long enough, it will always count as two letters on a famous conejcture.
Maybe also insert a joke about BSD Operating Systems if you're into that kind of stuff.
The conjecture states that Equation 1. "BSD Conjecture" holds for every elliptic curve over the rational numbers (which is defined by its constants and )
Equation 1. . Where the following numbers are definied for the elliptic curve we are currently considering, defined by its constants and :
The conjecture, if true, provides a (possibly inefficient) way to calculate the rank of an elliptic curve over the rational numbers, since we can calculate the number of elements of an elliptic curve over a finite field by Schoof's algorithm in polynomial time. So it is just a matter of calculating like that up to some point at which we are quite certain about .
The Wikipedia page of the this conecture is the perfect example of why it is not possible to teach natural sciences on Wikipedia. A million dollar problem, and the page is thoroughly incomprehensible unless you already know everything!
Figure 1.
as a function of for the elliptic curve
. Source. The curve is known to have rank 1, and the logarithmic plot tends more and more to a line of slope 1 as expected from the conjecture, matching the rank.
Video 2.
The $1,000,000 Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture by Absolutely Uniformly Confused (2022)
. Source. A respectable 1 minute attempt. But will be too fast for most people. The sweet spot is likely 2 minutes.
The paper that states the BSD Conjecture.

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