Monthly Archives: February 2012

Light fields and the vector camera

Sometimes I see something in the news that just makes me excited about math.  This is the kind of development I would love to explore with a class if I had a few days or weeks to spare!  On the … Continue reading

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Burger and Fries with Professor G. Michael Guy

He is a doer. You can easily see that about Professor G. Michael Guy, Assistant Professor at Queensborough Community College, just by taking a quick glance at his website. Being a CUNY Improving Mathematics Learning grant winner and a 2011 … Continue reading

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Log Rhythms

I’m nostalgic for an era that never included me–the days of the log table. Eli Maor’s book e: The story of a number, turned my attention to the history of logs.  He tells the story of the Scottish wizard Napier … Continue reading

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A Too-Modest Proposal (and a case against algebra)

The original A Modest Proposal, written in 1729 by Jonathan Swift, was one of the most scathing and viciously ironic pieces of political satire ever (if you are unfamiliar with it, he proposes the Irish poor sell their 1-year-old children to … Continue reading

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Gowers on Elsevier

Fields medalist and Polymath founder Timothy Gowers has some bellicose thoughts on the state of the journal industry.   As we all know, mathematics journals tend to be written, edited, and typeset by volunteers.   This can make their exponentially increasing … Continue reading

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Disturbing violations – mixed numbers, PEMDAS and more

1. Mixed numbers, the spittle on the front steps of our oh-so-coherent-and-sensible mathematical edifice I learned to loathe mixed numbers, such as , after dealing amicably with them for thirty years or so.  It was on the Appalachian Trail, I … Continue reading

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Chicken and Rice with Professor Marina Dedlovskaya

Always soft-spoken, warm, and welcoming, Professor Marina Dedlovskaya is Associate Professor of Mathematics at LaGuardia Community College. She was a PI of a CUNY Improving Mathematics Learning grant winning project and that is how I met her more than 2 … Continue reading

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About the header image – the Cairo Tessellation

The header image was created by Richard Sheinaus, Director of Graphic Design at CUNY Central.  It depicts a tiling of the plane known as the Cairo Tessellation, so-called because it appears in the paving of several Cairo streets.  It has many … Continue reading

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City of Solitude

Many people have noticed and  commented on recent article in the New York Times on the value of solitude in creative work. In the article, Susan Cain remarks; … the most spectacularly creative people in many fields are often introverted, … Continue reading

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Doodling in Math Class

Five texting in the back.  Three bored, overconfident, ignoring you.  Seven who were placed incorrectly in your class and, after struggling through the first exam, will simply give up.  Four who answer all the questions (three consistently correct, who will … Continue reading

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