Link: The meaning of the search This beautiful essay in the last edition of Wired magazine gave a really nice explanation of why science (and math) is worth doing, even if we don’t get the answers we’re looking for. Worth the read. On [...]

I got some requests to clarify what I meant when I said that this was a moment for mathematics in our culture. Let me explain. For the first time ever, math is starting to be hip. When I was in high school I couldn’t imagine math being [...]

I have the quarter off from teaching, which means it’s the perfect time to get some serious work done on my thesis. The fact that the work that it most important in my life is also the least urgent—I could do nothing for six months [...]

Link: Beauty Through Mathematics Here’s another group out to show the world a vision of beauty through mathematics: Imaginary. Computers have made wonderful things possible in the realm of visualization. It is so labor intensive to get [...]

Earlier this year a middle schooler emailed me to ask me what my favorite mathematical symbol was. I didn’t have a good answer, because I’d never thought about it at length, and I ended up giving him the old standby answer: 0. The [...]

Link: Dollars to cents, courtesy of Verizon

There’s a line in Brecht’s Galileo where the eponymous character says, and I paraphrase, that in his lifetime he saw astronomy come out into the public sphere in a way it never had before. I believe this is such a moment for [...]

Link: Invisibility I sometimes have to defend math in the world. Normally, I follow Hardy and say that the reason to do math is not because it’s useful but because it’s beautiful. Every once in a while, though, it’s worth bringing [...]

Been busy lately with teaching and other stuff, but I’m still here and blogging. And, a fellow grad just gave me a copy of his manuscript on math in his life (I plan to write a very similar book sometime), so I’ll be reading that and [...]

I wasn’t expecting it, but someone on fluther managed to answer my question (see last post). Now I’m in an interesting position: I have a hunch that whenever this certain algebraic equation has nontrivial solutions, that corresponds to [...]

First of all, someone commented that it’s not really a conference, since it lasts for six months. More like a program. I’ve been in a tiny bit of a conundrum when talk times roll around: do I attend the talks, or do I keep at my own [...]

I’ve spent the last two days going over my problem, going over my approach, finding new gaps in my proof, fixing them… wash, rinse, repeat. It’s amazing that this vision of math as “getting to the right answer on your first try” [...]

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