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12:34 AM | Grandma Got STEM

It was my good fortune last weekend to meet the sister-in-law of one of my neighbors, mathematician and Harvey Mudd professor, Rachel Levy. Levy is also a blogger and her postings in Grandma Got STEM tell of achievements of women in science. I have looked for a poem to pair with my mention here of Grandma Got STEM. Although the following poem by Tami Haaland (found at the Poetry Foundation website) is not mathematical, it
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12:00 AM | Walking New York

Walking New York
Could a person walk the entire city of NY in their lifetime? (including inside apartments)
Asaf Shamir
Like the answer to Paint the Earth, the answer to the first part of this question is pretty straightforward to look up.
But what if it weren't? Can we figure out the answer from things we already know? Let's look at a few ways of estimating it.
First of all, how wide is a street? I've never seen one of those flashing crosswalk countdowns signs start with less
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1:57 AM | Changing colors, counting syllables

Changing Colorsby JoAnne GrowneyBlueyoyo --awkwardlystopping-starting,rising-plummeting,seeking self-control. Please,mother-friend-lover-child, don'tpull string. Let me collect myself.I lift myself to the treetops,soar with the golden eagle,find rest on fleecy clouds.My orb embraceseverybody --powerful,yellow sun.

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12:00 AM | Into the Blue

Into the Blue
If I shot an infinitely strong laser beam into the sky at a random point, how much damage would it do?
Garrett D.
A lot of the time, if a question includes the word "infinity," the answer is "an infinite amount"—when there's an answer at all.
An infinitely strong laser pointer would deliver an infinite amount of energy to the air in its path, which would in turn radiate an infinite amount of energy in all directions, which would destroy everything.
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2:37 PM | Poetry in Math Journals

The Mathematical Intelligencer (publisher of the poem by Gizem Karaali given below) and the Journal of Humanistic Mathematics (an online, open-access journal edited by Mark Huber and Gizem Karaali) are periodicals that include math-related poetry in each issue. For example, in the most recent issue of JHM, we have these titles:Articles: Joining the mathematician's delirium to the poet's logic'': Mathematical Literature and
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12:11 PM | Easiest KenKen Ever?

Saying that I like KenKen® would be like saying that Sigmund Freud liked cocaine. (Too soon?) ‘Twould be more proper to say that I am so thoroughly addicted to the puzzle that the length of my dog’s morning walks aren’t measured in miles or minutes but in number of 6 × 6 puzzles that I complete. (Most mornings, […]

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11:37 AM | Spiral Inequality

(1) Archimedean spiral(2) Fermat's spiral (Parabolic spiral)(3) Hyperbolic spiral (Reciprocal spiral)(4) Lituus(5) Logarithmic spiral( Mathematical software used: gnuplot )

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3:43 AM | Think of a Number

I love to create math games almost as much as I love to play them. My favorite professional project was leading the development of Calculation Nation. And my favorite game on the site is neXtu, though other games on the site may promote more sophisticated mathematical thinking. I have many reasons to love my wife, […]

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3:43 AM | My best dream is floating . . .

Today I want to urge you to visit several sites in addition to my blog. For example, there is the recent announcement of 2014 Fields Medal (equivalent to a Nobel prize) winners -- the four winners include the first female mathematician (Maryam Mirzakhani) ever to be selected as a Fields Medalist (equivalent to a Nobel Prize) and a mathematician who loves poetry (Manjul Bhargava). With the help of a "Google Alert" I found a
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I’ve posted code for asciihelper, a MacOS editor/viewer for Asciidoc on github. It is now at version 0.1, but it does work. (You will need Xcode beta 6 or later to compile it; it is written in Swift). Asciidoc is a markup language that Is human readable Can produce output in HTML, PDF, EPUB3, and […]

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12:00 AM | Expensive Shoebox

Expensive Shoebox
What would be the most expensive way to fill a size 11 shoebox (e.g. with 64 GB MicroSD cards all full of legally purchased music)?
Rick Lewis
A shoebox full of valuable stuff seems to top out at about $2 billion. Surprisingly, this turns out to be true for a wide range of possible fillings.
The MicroSD cards are a good idea. iTunes songs cost about $1 each, and MicroSD cards have a capacity of about 1.6 petabytes per gallon. A men's size 11 shoebox is about 10-15
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5:25 PM | Narrated by a mathematician

Recently translated by Adam Morris, the novel With My Dog-Eyes (Melville House, 2014) by Brazilian writer Hilda Hilst (1930-2004) is narrated by a mathematician-poet. That fact of narration is what first drew me to the book. (See also this July 3 posting.) And then there is (related in Morris's introduction to the translation) Hilst's sad life, perhaps mirrored in her characters. These are the opening lines from the novel's narrator: The cross on
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12:34 AM | Spiral Polyskelion

Spiral Types:(1) Archimedean spiral: r(θ) = a*θ(1 < number of spiral turns < 2)(2 < number of spiral turns < 3)(2) Fermat's spiral (Parabolic spiral): r(θ) = a*sqrt(θ)(1 < number of spiral turns < 2)(2 < number of spiral turns < 3)(3) Hyperbolic spiral (Reciprocal spiral): r(θ) = a/θ(4) Lituus: r(θ) = a/sqrt(θ)(5) Logarithmic spiral: r(θ) = a*exp(b*θ)(b = 0.25)(b = 0.618)( Mathematical software used: GeoGebra )

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8:02 PM | Spiral of Spirals

Spirals (green, magenta) around a Spiral Dodecaskelion (grey)A spiral of spirals of spirals.The spirals are logarithmic spirals: r(θ) = a exp(bθ), b = 0.2.Spirals of spirals of spirals of ..... (b = 0.2)A spiral of spirals of spirals.The spirals are logarithmic spirals with b = 0.30635.Spirals of spirals of spirals of ..... (b = 0.30635)Logarithmic spiralsThe pair of big spirals: b = 0.1The small spirals: b = 0.2The small logarithmic spirals: b
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3:41 PM | Squaring the Circle

Reminding us of the ancient unsolvable problem that so many attempted, the July/August 2014 issue of Poetry Magazine contains "Squaring the Circle," a poem by Philip Fried. Here are the opening lines; please follow the Poetry Magazine link above to enjoy the full poem.from Squaring the Circle by Philip Fried It's a little-known fact that God's headgear -- A magician's collapsible silk top
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12:07 PM | Things I Learned on a Boston Duck Tour

Dirty Waters led our Boston Duck Tour yesterday and told us a little about himself: I’m wicked smaht. In fact, I was valedictorian of my high school. Of course, I was homeschooled… but my mom says it still counts. Dirty was a veritable fountain of math-related trivia. For instance, he told us that the movie […]

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3:03 AM | Divided selves, some of them savvy

For social connections, it is desirable not to be pegged as a member of an outcast group. And thus a mathematician is likely to have at least two selves -- one who lives in the world of mathematics and another separate social self that negotiates that rest-of-the-world where many fear and shun mathematics. I found a situation somewhat similar when I studied at Hunter College in Manhattan: I needed a separate self who negotiated the city. The problem-solving
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6:36 PM | Notes on writing math in asciidoc

See offcenterapps.com for some notes on composing mathematics using asciidoctor. Asciidoctor give a good way of publishing mathematical text on the web. In-line LaTeX is enclosed by escaped parentheses\(a^2 + b^2 = c^2\) while display math uses escaped braces \[ a^2 + b^2 = c^2 \] The asciidoctor-chrome-extension is highly recommended for working with asciidoctor. […]

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9:03 AM | Nonsense words in Swift

I’ve posted some Swift code on github for generating nonsense words. The function patternedNonsense() generates pronounceable words like 1: hira-zansa 2: siqe-ratse 3: sifo-dassa 4: tixi-furse The second, pureNonsense9() generates words like 1: gjoh-xkcri 2: xxgg-jjqfh 3: mxsv-tngwh 4: ftkm-aakif Both functions use an extension to the String class that works like this let alphabet […]

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7:52 AM | Q, Jokers, and Clowns

Connor McBride has a beautiful functional pearl, “Clowns to the Left of me, Jokers to the Right”, in which he discusses the idea of suspending the computation of a catamorphism. I just wanted to point out the relation of his work to the -derivative. Since Star Trek‘s character Q is a trickter god like Loki, […]

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In a MacOs app (Swift), you can run system commands like this: let commandOutput = executeCommand("/bin/echo", ["Hello, I am here!"]) println("Command output: \(commandOutput)") To do so, define executeCommand like this: func executeCommand(command: String, args: [String]) -> String { let task = NSTask() task.launchPath = command task.arguments = args let pipe = NSPipe() task.standardOutput = pipe […]

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8:35 PM | A math prof's lament

The mathematical connection for this poem is the fact that it was inspired by regrets for a missed opportunity in a mathematics class -- an opportunity missed by me and thus by one of my students. There are so many ways to be wrong!Lament of a Professor at the End of the Spring Semester by JoAnne GrowneyI took an extra step to bridge the gapbetween us, blind to your matching backward step.We've moved in tandem until I'm angry […]

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Scroll down to find titles and dates of posts in 2014. At the bottom is a links to lists of posts through 2013 and 2012 and 2011 -- and all the way back to March 2010 when this blog was begun. This link leads to a PDF file that lists searchable topics and names of poets and mathematicians presented herein. July 29 Fixing something wrongJuly 27 Each equation is a playful catch . . .July 25 Poems with "equation" in the titleJuly 19
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This summer I taught a graduate statistics course in data visualisation at the University of Arkansas. As a final project the students had to find a data set, think of questions you could… Continue reading →

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I’ve just posted a tool on github for turning marked up text files into Swift playgrounds. This is version 0.1. As an example, here is the text of a file basic.ad: Variable are where you store stuff: -- var a = 1.23 var b = 4.56 a*b -- Loops are used to do repetious work […]

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5:16 AM | Math for International Beer Day

I don’t need an excuse to do math. Nor do I need one to drink beer. But if I did, today is IBD. I’m most happy when I can pursue my two passions simultaneously… That said, I never attempt calculus while imbibing. It’s not safe to drink and derive. And like most of the American […]

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8:53 PM | Swift Drawing 101

The aim of this post is to explore basic drawing techniques in Swift. The image below is the output of our code, which is listed further down. The code should be pasted into a playground window in Xcode 6. To see the images produced, and with the mouse, select View > Assistant Editor > Show […]

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Erica Sadun posted some very nice code for extending Swift to create strings from string formats and arbitrary arguments. Below are some examples which make use of her code. // Execute this code is a Swift playground: look for // output in assistant editor import UIKit // The next two functions are from ericasadun.com func […]

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Quando ho condiviso il tweet qui sotto, non mi ero reso ancora conto del nome che avevo appena letto, eppure avrebbe dovuto suonarmi un campanello nella testa. Continuano i riconoscimenti internazionali per la #matematica dell'Universita' della #Calabria pic.twitter.com/JHIWaVlVGu— Gianluigi Filippelli (@ulaulaman) August 18, 2014Poi dopo è successo che sono andato a ricontrollare (che poi i campanelli magari suonano e semplicemente la suoneria è così bassa che non la senti, […]

Nash, J. (1950). Equilibrium points in n-person games, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 36 (1) 48-49. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.36.1.48

Nash J. (1951). Non-Cooperative Games, The Annals of Mathematics, 54 (2) 286-295. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/1969529

Gottlob G., Greco G. & Scarcello F. (2003). Pure Nash equilibria, Proceedings of the 9th conference on Theoretical aspects of rationality and knowledge - TARK '03, 215-230. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/846241.846269

Greco, G. & Scarcello, F. (2009). On the complexity of constrained Nash equilibria in graphical games, Theoretical Computer Science, 410 (38-40) 3901-3924. DOI: 10.1016/j.tcs.2009.05.030

Goldstone, R. & Janssen, M. (2005). Computational models of collective behavior, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9 (9) 424-430. DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2005.07.009

Beni G. (1993). Swarm Intelligence in Cellular Robotic Systems, Robots and Biological Systems: Towards a New Bionics?, NATO ASI Series Volume 102 703-712. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-58069-7_38

Bonabeau E., Dorigo M. & Theraulaz G. (2000). Inspiration for optimization from social insect behaviour, Nature, 406 (6791) 39-42. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/35017500

Citation

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Quando ho condiviso il tweet qui sotto, non mi ero reso ancora conto del nome che avevo appena letto, eppure avrebbe dovuto suonarmi un campanello nella testa. Continuano i riconoscimenti internazionali per la #matematica dell'Universita' della #Calabria pic.twitter.com/JHIWaVlVGu— Gianluigi Filippelli (@ulaulaman) August 18, 2014Poi dopo è successo che sono andato a ricontrollare (che poi i campanelli magari suonano e semplicemente la suoneria è così bassa che non la senti, […]

Nash, J. (1950). Equilibrium points in n-person games, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 36 (1) 48-49. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.36.1.48

Nash J. (1951). Non-Cooperative Games, The Annals of Mathematics, 54 (2) 286-295. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/1969529

Gottlob G., Greco G. & Scarcello F. (2003). Pure Nash equilibria, Proceedings of the 9th conference on Theoretical aspects of rationality and knowledge - TARK '03, 215-230. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/846241.846269

Greco, G. & Scarcello, F. (2009). On the complexity of constrained Nash equilibria in graphical games, Theoretical Computer Science, 410 (38-40) 3901-3924. DOI: 10.1016/j.tcs.2009.05.030

Goldstone, R. & Janssen, M. (2005). Computational models of collective behavior, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9 (9) 424-430. DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2005.07.009

Beni G. (1993). Swarm Intelligence in Cellular Robotic Systems, Robots and Biological Systems: Towards a New Bionics?, NATO ASI Series Volume 102 703-712. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-58069-7_38

Bonabeau E., Dorigo M. & Theraulaz G. (2000). Inspiration for optimization from social insect behaviour, Nature, 406 (6791) 39-42. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/35017500

Citation

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Zur Jahrtausendwende hatte das Clay-Institut jeweils 1 Million Dollar für sieben mathematische Probleme ausgelobt, von denen in der Zwischenzeit erst eines (die Poincaré-Vermutung) gelöst wurde. Manjul Bhargava, frischgebackener Fields-Medaillist, hat heute auf dem ICM eine 66,48-prozentige Lösung eines weiteren Millionenproblems – der Birch-Swinnerton-Dyer-Vermutung – vorgestellt, die ihm freilich keine 66,48% des Millionenpreises einbringen wird… Es…

Manjul Bhargava, Christopher Skinner & Wei Zhang (2014). A majority of elliptic curves over $\mathbb Q$ satisfy the Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer conjecture, ArXiv, arXiv: 1407.1826v2

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Un gruppo di fisici che studiano la meccanica dei fluidi ha iniziato una proficua collaborazione con Kara Maki riguardo lo studio dinamico delle "pellicole" di lacrime. Il modello, sviluppato in tre articoli che hanno preceduto il lavoro conclusivo, soprattutto sperimentale, è così descritto: all'interno della pellicola lacrimale, le dinamiche del fluido sono governate dalle equazioni incomprimibili di Navier-Stokes insieme con la conservazione di massa ed energia. Alla superficie libera
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Miller A., Carchman R., Long R. & Denslow S.A. La Crosse viral infection in hospitalized pediatric patients in Western North Carolina., Hospital pediatrics, (26) PMID: 24313031

Maki K.L., Braun R.J., Henshaw W.D. & King-Smith P.E. (2010). Tear film dynamics on an eye-shaped domain I: pressure boundary conditions., Mathematical medicine and biology : a journal of the IMA, 27 (3) 227-254. PMID: 20064825

Maki K.L., Braun R.J., Ucciferro P., Henshaw W.D. & King-Smith P.E. (2010). Tear film dynamics on an eye-shaped domain. Part 2. Flux boundary conditions, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 647 361-390. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/s002211200999382x

Maki K.L., Braun R.J. & P. E. King-Smith (2008). An overset grid method for the study of reflex tearing, Mathematical Medicine and Biology, 25 (3) 187-214. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/imammb/dqn013

Citation

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Un gruppo di fisici che studiano la meccanica dei fluidi ha iniziato una proficua collaborazione con Kara Maki riguardo lo studio dinamico delle "pellicole" di lacrime. Il modello, sviluppato in tre articoli che hanno preceduto il lavoro conclusivo, soprattutto sperimentale, è così descritto: all'interno della pellicola lacrimale, le dinamiche del fluido sono governate dalle equazioni incomprimibili di Navier-Stokes insieme con la conservazione di massa ed energia. Alla superficie libera […]

Miller A., Carchman R., Long R. & Denslow S.A. La Crosse viral infection in hospitalized pediatric patients in Western North Carolina., Hospital pediatrics, (26) PMID: 24313031

Maki K.L., Braun R.J., Henshaw W.D. & King-Smith P.E. (2010). Tear film dynamics on an eye-shaped domain I: pressure boundary conditions., Mathematical medicine and biology : a journal of the IMA, 27 (3) 227-254. PMID: 20064825

Maki K.L., Braun R.J., Ucciferro P., Henshaw W.D. & King-Smith P.E. (2010). Tear film dynamics on an eye-shaped domain. Part 2. Flux boundary conditions, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 647 361-390. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/s002211200999382x

Maki K.L., Braun R.J. & P. E. King-Smith (2008). An overset grid method for the study of reflex tearing, Mathematical Medicine and Biology, 25 (3) 187-214. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/imammb/dqn013

Citation

MindAfterMath tweeted: @MindAfterMath

2014-08-30 07:15:05

christianp tweeted: @christianp

RT @shoomlah: https://t.co/q6bqTZLzwT Elders React to Oculus Rift is officially the cutest thing

2014-08-30 07:15:00

christianp tweeted: @christianp

@evelynjlamb certain parties abused our free pads of paper policy and now each student gets issued one pad at the start of the year :(

2014-08-30 07:10:12

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @FXMC1957: 30 August 1797. Mary Shelley was born in London. She's best known for her classic Gothic novel 'Frankenstein'. http://t.co/SK…

2014-08-30 06:56:43

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @ferwen Ernst Haeckel & Nicholas Miklouho-Maclay, photographed in the Canary Islands, 1866 http://t.co/H2rTM6gKMG http://t.co/SO9S3D2xJk

2014-08-30 06:56:04

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @ferwen: A touching story: The ancient conversation between plants, fungi and bacteria - Astrobiology Magazine http://t.co/JNpPeA7DO4 vi…

2014-08-30 06:55:04

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @abbeylinegold This rather brings it into perspective.. http://t.co/rytA40fOca

2014-08-30 06:53:50

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @Ri_Science Did you know we're now on Tumblr too? Look out for gems from our #archives and museum http://t.co/BfPoZeobDR #histsci

2014-08-30 06:51:30

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