Category Archives: Education

Ikea proofs

Overheard: He writes a lot of Ikea proofs — all the parts are there,but the reader has to assemble them, and sometimes there are a fewextra parts at the end.

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“Mathematical education” by G. St. L. Carson

This is the other book I mentioned finding at the Book Barn.  It is a collection of eight lectures delivered by the author in 1912 and 1913, and a fascinating historical document.  Some features that I found particularly interesting follow. … Continue reading

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American woman math PhDs of the 1940s

Apparently I’ve had this blog for a really long time: just over nine years ago, I wrote about Margaret A. M. Murray’s book “Women Becoming Mathematicians”. This post is just to note that the latest AMS Notices contains an article … Continue reading

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No blondes allowed

This article about a 1969 episode in Potomac, MD, in which a school implemented anti-blonde apartheid during National Brotherhood Week,  is deeply fascinating. The blond students were forced to use separate restrooms, doors and drinking fountains, relegated to separate tables … Continue reading

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“Trigonethermic”

A coinage of a former student, that makes me happy.

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Factor triples

Over at JD2718, Jonathan asks the following question: [A conference] presenter posed a problem that required finding three numbers that multiplied to make 72. The list included 1, 8, 9 and 2, 2, 18 and 3, 4, 6 and several … Continue reading

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Open problems in algebraic combinatorics

This is pretty cool: Open Problems in Algebraic Combinatorics blog.  (It’s attached to this conference.)

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“Dialogues on mathematics” by Alfred Renyi

For various reasons I have recently been reading a bunch of books broadly addressing the theme “what is mathematics?”  (Linderholm was accidentally a lead-in, and clearly belongs in the category.)  This one is a short (under 100 pages) and snappy read, … Continue reading

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“Mathematics Made Difficult” by Carl E. Linderholm

I have seen attributed to Halmos (Linderholm’s advisor) the description of this book as an in-joke to the mathematical community, and that’s about right: I don’t think it would be possible to explain why it’s funny to someone who doesn’t … Continue reading

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West Virginia teacher strike

So, West Virginia teachers (some of whom are unionized, but whose unions are not recognized by the state) have been on strike for a week, continuing even after their union leadership struck a deal with the governor.  (The strikers fear, … Continue reading

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