Utterly inspired by the header image of the Cairo tessellation (Jonas’s 2/4 post), I’ve been slightly obsessed by street tiling these days. On a recent Friday when the weather was simply gorgeous, I, along with my dog, Basil, decided to go tile-hunting in our neighborhood. None seemed to have “notable mathematical properties” (or do they?) as the Cairo tessellation does, but some were very pretty. The winner of the day (for me) was the one in the middle, the tiling you can find in front of the Smithonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum on East 91st Street and 5th Avenue (currently closed for renovation). The yellow-ish colored herringbone pattern was mesmerizing, and I was standing there for a while looking down on the sidewalk.
Three questions: 1) Math indeed seems to be everywhere. Can mathematicians enjoy walking around without being distracted every 5 seconds?; 2) Can “pretty” be expressed in math? How?; and 3) Can you guess where the other two photos are from?