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tye
<p>
I suggest you do a search for "sphere packing problem" and see the variety of problems that fall under this category. I ran into several before hitting the "kissing number" problem for idential spheres in different numbers of dimensions that you seem to think is the only one.
</p><p>
From what I read, the <em>original</em> problem was popularized by Kepler when he guessed how tightly you could pack identical spheres in 3 dimensions. This one was recently solved (by proving the "obvious").
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<a href="/index.pl?node=tye&lastnode_id=1072">tye</a>
(but my friends call me "Tye")
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