...a companion blog to "Math-Frolic," specifically for interviews, book reviews, weekly-linkfests, and longer posts or commentary than usually found at the Math-Frolic site.

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"Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty – a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture, without appeal to any part of our weaker nature, without the gorgeous trappings of painting or music, yet sublimely pure, and capable of a stern perfection such as only the greatest art can show." ---Bertrand Russell (1907) Rob Gluck

"I have come to believe, though very reluctantly, that it [mathematics] consists of tautologies. I fear that, to a mind of sufficient intellectual power, the whole of mathematics would appear trivial, as trivial as the statement that a four-legged animal is an animal." ---Bertrand Russell (1957)

******************************************************************** Rob Gluck

Friday, May 1, 2015

Weekly Math Grab-bag


Another grand week in math cyberspace:

1)  Some star geometry from Futility Closet:
http://www.futilitycloset.com/2015/04/25/star-power-2/

2)  Evelyn Lamb interviewed two math communicators, Katie Steckles and Laura Taalman, last week:
http://tinyurl.com/kuyhjcb

Will quickly mention too that Evelyn has chosen one of my very favorite 2014 books, Matt Parker's, "Things To Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension" as an adjunct text for one of her math classes.

3)  Patrick Honner posted about the $25,000 Rosenthal Prize for innovation in math teaching, for those who may wish to apply for it:
http://mrhonner.com/archives/14799

4)  A nice problem from Stephen Cavadino:
https://cavmaths.wordpress.com/2015/04/23/equal-products/

5)  Alex Bellos on "The Travelling Politician Problem":
http://tinyurl.com/lgw6e7e

6)  The ills of bar graphs:
http://www.nature.com/news/bar-graphs-criticized-for-misrepresenting-data-1.17383?WT.mc_id=FBK_NatureNews

7)  Anniversary of Ramanujan's death:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/amir-aczel/homage-to-a-mysterious-ge_b_7113474.html

8)  A conversation transcript with Cedric Villani about his Fields Medal-winning work and recent book, "Birth of a Theorem":
http://tinyurl.com/nx7y6x9
also, Nassim Taleb loves Villani's new book:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R21UUMQ8KAGPT9/ref=cm_cr_pr_rvw_ttl?ie=UTF8&ASIN=0865477671

9) 
New Rubik's Cube solution record set last weekend, now down to 5.25 seconds!
http://boingboing.net/2015/04/28/watch-solving-a-rubiks-cube.html
Now, I want to know how long it takes to RE-SET a Rubik's Cube back to a 'random' starting position... and what does all this have to say about P vs. NP ;-)))

10) 
A little bit from the creator of Ken-Ken puzzles:
http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865627475/Have-fun-and-do-basic-math-with-KenKen-puzzles.html

11)  Science/physics writer Margaret Wertheim interviewed last weeked on NPR's "On Being" (including some math):
http://onbeing.org/program/margaretwertheim-the-grandeur-and-limits-of-science/7472/audio?embed=1

12)  Seems like P-andora's Box has been opened with p-values... Good, bad, and mediocre p-values from Gelman:
http://andrewgelman.com/2015/04/30/good-mediocre-bad-p-values/ 

13)  Deborah Mayo on "junk science" at the FBI:
http://tinyurl.com/kfkeqd2
(which links in turn to this Wash. Post piece on suspended testing at the D.C. DNA crime lab:
http://tinyurl.com/qzdecz9 ) 

14)  David Bressoud warns of a "perfect storm" brewing in higher math education:
http://launchings.blogspot.com/2015/05/calculus-at-crisis-i-pressures.html

15)  Last weekend, I reviewed Jim Henle's wonderful new book, "The Proof and the Pudding":
http://mathtango.blogspot.com/2015/04/jim-henle-serves-up-math-piping-fresh.html 

16)  Am passing along so many links already this week I won't even bother to mention "Mike's Math Page," with its plethora of weekly content here ;-):
https://mikesmathpage.wordpress.com/



Potpourri BONUS! (extra non-mathematical links):

1)  As a Freeman Dyson fan, will just note that he has a new volume out, "Dreams of Earth and Sky," a compendium of book reviews he did for The New York Review of Books. I especially enjoyed the second half of the book (though no math content):
http://www.amazon.com/Dreams-Earth-Sky-Freeman-Dyson-ebook/dp/B00N6PBDPC

2)  Will close out with this posting (that contains no math) from the "Delta Scape" math blogger/teacher, because I suspect most of us can never be reminded too many times of "What Matters":
http://deltascape.blogspot.com/2015/04/what-matters.html



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