Category Archives: Uncategorized

Numbers and imagination: notation and literature

I had the good pleasure to watch Batman vs. Superman this past weekend (I loved it) with my niece and her father.  In the conversation preceding it she asked about Knuth arrows. I had shown them to her previously and she was … Continue reading

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The meaning of numbers

A brief post of a few thoughts and a link my friend Tom sent me to an interview with Randall Monroe, the author of XKCD.  The interview was a timely read so I’ll start with a great quote: A good … Continue reading

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Context in mathematics

Ever since reading about ethnomathematics I’ve been wondering how to identify what is western about western mathematics.  Moreover, if we view culture more abstractly as groups of individuals connected by traditions, beliefs, practices etc then 19th century woodworkers could have … Continue reading

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Animated Engines and Mechanical Movements

I endeavour to keep this dying blog aloft.  It’s not actually dying so much as it’s in a medically induced coma while I recover from the consequences of reproduction.  I have been motivated recently by learning that someone has been … Continue reading

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Mathematical Thinking vs. Mathematical Content

I had an epiphany recently regarding my teaching.  This past spring I had decided to include a unit on Rubik’s cube.  My goal was to introduce cyclic notation, commutators and conjugates as methods for devising algorithms or uncovering appealing patterns … Continue reading

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Reflections and Reports of Representation Theory – Spring 2015 – 1

I’m sitting in a course on representation theory this semester and though it will primarily deal with finite groups I’m extremely excited!  The professor is very good, very clear and motivates material very well.  The past few days has been … Continue reading

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RSA encryption from a novice point of view – 1

I mentioned in a previous post that I covered RSA encryption in the liberal arts math course I teach.  It was part of a progression of exposing the students to larger and larger finite numbers before tackling the concept of infinity. … Continue reading

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