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Posts

January 29, 2015

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12:48 AM | Logic for Philosophers, NYU, Spring 2015, graduate course PHIL-GA 1003
This seminar will be a graduate-level survey of topics in logic for philosophers, including propositional logic, modal logic, predicate logic, model theory, completeness, incompleteness, computability theory, set theory and the higher infinite. The material will thus be a mixture of … Continue reading →

January 28, 2015

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11:15 PM | Bayesian optimization for likelihood-free inference of simulator-based statistical models
Michael Gutmann and Jukka Corander arXived this paper two weeks ago. I read part of it (mostly the extended introduction part) on the flight from Edinburgh to Birmingham this morning. I find the reflection it contains on the nature of the ABC approximation quite deep and thought-provoking.  Indeed, the major theme of the paper is […]
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10:21 PM | Pay it backwards
Recently, I had two weird reimbursement experiences. The first was getting a check reimbursing me for travel to a conference I attended over two years ago (it seems the check got lost in the mail or something). The other was … Continue reading →
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7:43 PM | A Non-Noetherian Subring of a Polynomial Ring
Sometimes there are wild beasts hiding in the tamest of rings. Let’s flush one out! Let $k$ be a field. Consider the following subring $R$ of $k[x,y]$ consisting of polynomials all of whose monomials are never of the form $x^i$ for $i\geq 1$. So $f = xy + y^2 + x^2y\in R$ but $f = […]
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5:01 PM | The name of the rose and the smell of the article
“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet” wrote Shakespeare.  Yes, but an article about the rose’s smell wouldn’t smell as sweet at all. The form of the article as a mean for disseminating research is more and more questioned. I liked  Idiot things that we we do in our papers out of … Continue reading The name of the rose and the smell of the article →
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4:00 PM | Soluzione al quizzino del sabato sera (in cui si mostra come, a volte, si possano davvero sfruttare evidenti ragioni di simmetria)
Il problema chiedeva di colorare una scacchiera quadrata con due colori, in modo tale che qualunque rettangolo contenuto in essa (non degenere) abbia i quattro angoli colorati con entrambi i colori.Per scacchiere piccole ci si riesce, il post forniva degli esempi. Per scacchiere grandi, invece, che succede?Primo fatto: se per un certo valore di n la scacchiera n×n non è colorabile, allora non lo sono nemmeno quelle il cui lato ha una lunghezza maggiore di n, dato che non siamo in grado di […]
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3:43 PM | On Barthes’s “Introduction to the Structural Analysis of Narratives”
I feel I may have been a little unfair in choosing “From Work to Text” last post. In the same collection of essays, Image – Music – Text, is a much better introduction to what Barthes is known for: (post-)structuralism. … Continue reading →
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3:04 PM | Glibc GHOST vulnerability
Just heard about a security vulnerability on Linux machines running Red Hat version 5 to 7, Ubuntu 10.04 and 12.04, Debian version 7, Fedora versions 19 and older, and SUSE versions 11 and older. The vulnerability occurs through a buffer overflow from some functions in the C library Glibc, which allows for a remote code […]
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1:54 PM | Neues über Minimalflächen
Minimalflächen sind, anschaulich gesprochen, Flächen, deren Flächeninhalt sich vergrößert, wenn man sie ein wenig verformt. (Mathematisch korrekt definiert man sie als Flächen, deren mittlere Krümmung konstant 0 ist, und in Wirklichkeit ist das nur eine notwendige, aber nicht hinreichende Bedingung dafür, dass jede kleine Variation den Flächeninhalt vergrößert.) Zur Klassifikation von Minimalflächen im 3-dimensionalen […]
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1:30 PM | 1/28/15
|1 - (2 * 8)| = 15 Also: 12 - 8 + 1 = 5 Also: |1 + 2 - 8| = 1 * 5 Also: 1 + 2 = (8 * 1) - 5
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12:31 PM | Apiological: mathematical speculations about bees (Part 1: Honeycomb geometry)
Bees have encouraged mathematical speculation for two millennia, since classical scholars tried to explain the geometrically appealing shape of honeycombs. How do bees tackle complex problems that humans would express mathematically? In this series we’ll explore three situations where understanding the maths could help explain the uncanny instincts of bees. Honeycomb geometry Honeybees collect nectar... Read more »
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10:10 AM | Ehrenfest on Adiabatic Invariants in the early Quantum Theory
Who knows, maybe after nearly 100 years some of these early Quantum Theory considerations will prove useful when looked upon by fresh minds. Stranger things have happened in the history of science. In these researches I especially made use of … Continue reading →
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10:07 AM | Review: The Mathematics of Love
This is a review of The Mathematics of Love: Patterns, Proofs and the search for the Ultimate Equation by Hannah Fry, a new book which Katie was sent an advance copy of. 3rd February 2015 (hardcover); Simon & Schuster/TED Hannah Fry, who’s a lecturer and public engagement fellow at UCL, has written a book. Following a... Read more »
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12:43 AM | Blizzard of 2015
Nate Silver wrote an excellent blog post on how (in New York) it’s been snowing the same amount it always has but on fewer days. If it’s snowing on fewer days, those must be bigger storms. He ran the tests … Continue reading →

January 27, 2015

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11:15 PM | Robert’s paradox [reading in Reading]
On Wednesday afternoon, Richard Everitt and Dennis Prangle organised an RSS workshop in Reading on Bayesian Computation. And invited me to give a talk there, along with John Hemmings, Christophe Andrieu, Marcelo Pereyra, and themselves. Given the proximity between Oxford and Reading, this felt like a neighbourly visit, especially when I realised I could take […]
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10:49 PM | Mathematics Without Apologies
If you’d asked me ten years ago to describe a book I’d love to read that could be characterized as part of an “incredibly unlikely trend in books about math for the general public”, I might have chosen “brilliant meditations … Continue reading →
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8:54 PM | Astronomía: la tatarabuela de las ciencias exactas [vídeo]
El pasado 10 de diciembre tuvo lugar la conferencia Astronomía: la tatarabuela de las ciencias exactas a cargo de mi buen amigo Don Pablo Rodríguez @DonMostrenco.Pablo aprovechó la charla para hacer un recorrido histórico (con algunas ramificaciones) por la astronomía, haciendo especial hincapié en su estrecha relación con las matemáticas.Fue una conferencia bastante amena y entretenida, a pesar del miedo (en el buen sentido) que Pablo tenía al principio, pues era la primera vez que […]
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7:05 PM | Classification of Division Algebras
Notes for a talk about division algebras and their classification theory.Continue reading «Classification of Division Algebras»
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6:49 PM | “They are artificial microbes that can be created to make …”
My brother  Dragos Buliga, a sharp film director and media producer, asked me to describe to him in lay terms what he sees in these demos pages. I came up with this. (See more at chemlambda vision page.) They are artificial microbes that can be created to make a computer do anything without knowing what … Continue reading “They are artificial microbes that can be created to make …” →
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4:47 PM | Moving Beyond Formulas When Investigating Triangle Area
For the past year, my blogging partner Scott and I have worked with the team of Everyday Mathematics to build interactive Web Sketchpad models for their forthcoming new edition. It’s been fun for both of us to find ways to insert dynamic mathematics into their K–6 curriculum. Last year, I shared an Everyday Mathematics isosceles triangle investigation that […]
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4:09 PM | Equivalences de décalages et K-théorie algébrique d’après Boyle et Schmieding
Un théorème classique de Bob Williams (1974) traduit la conjugaison topologique des décalages de type fini en une relation d’équivalence entre matrices carrées (de taille arbitraire): l’équivalence de décalage forte (SSE). Williams a également introduit l’équivalence de décalage (SE). Cette dernière relation est un affaiblissement de SSE et qui s’analyse complètement en termes de groupes […]
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4:00 PM | One Theme, Three Ways: Customizing Twenty Fifteen
WordPress.com's default theme for 2015 is the perfect canvas for your creative vision.
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2:19 PM | Snowpocalypse 2015
For the last few days the media in New York have been filled with continuous frantic warnings of the deadly storm of the century bearing down on the city. Grocery stores have been emptied, with long lines of desperate people … Continue reading →
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1:30 PM | 1/27/15
12 - 7 = 1 * 5 Also: 1 - 2 + 7 = 1 + 5 Also: 1 + (2 * 7) = 15
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1:22 PM | Why Should Penguins Care About Maths?
I regularly review resources written for pupils and teachers that in some way aim to support or extend Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education. The most recent campaign in the UK is the Your Life campaign and as usual it has a website with short articles designed for teachers and pupils to browse and... Read more »
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1:05 PM | A crossword clue
48-Across in today’s New York Times crossword: “group you can rely on when it counts?” Twelve letters. I’ve referred to their work as our nation’s once-every-decade exercise in large-scale enumerative combinatorics. (Although of course they do more than just the … Continue reading →
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11:08 AM | Game theory and anger
As a child, I recall learning the Latin tag “Ira furor brevis est” (Anger is a brief madness). It makes the point that anger is irrational; really, as game theorists we ought never to get angry. On the other hand, emotional modelling is important for us as computer scientists: the article Computationally Modeling Human Emotion was highlighted on the front cover of the December issue of the CACM. A recent article, The Commitment Function of Angry Facial Expressions, by Lawrence Ian Reed, […]
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10:30 AM | Hausdorff y la «muerte libre»
por Antonio J. Durán, matemático y escritor En 2014 se ha cumplido un siglo de la publicación del libro de Felix Hausdorff Fundamentos de la teoría de conjuntos ―Grundzüge der Mengenlehre en alemán―. Además de ser una introducción a la teoría de conjuntos, se le considera el libro fundacional de la topología, aunque de lo […]Entra en Gaussianos si quieres hacer algún comentario sobre este artículo, consultar entradas anteriores o enviarnos un mensaje.Construye […]
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10:10 AM | Laplace did reproducible science with Statistics
Over 200 years ago, Laplace was using statistics to make major discoveries in astronomy that have held up quite well over time. So it’s worth seeing where he got his probability distributions. In the example below, Laplace first thinks deeply … Continue reading →
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9:31 AM | Ramon Llull
Last Saturday the Guardian had a review of The Serpent Papers by Jessica Cornwell (granddaughter of John Le Carré). Set in Barcelona and Mallorca, the book is a murder mystery and more; its presiding genius is Ramon Llull, the mediaeval … Continue reading →
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