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mathematical reality

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Dating grad students in other departments [03 Aug 2012|01:27am]

Someone I know brought up a good question and I'd like the opinion of others on this. Is it OK for a new assistant professor (in the math dept.) to date a PhD student in another department (in this case Biology department.) I see nothing wrong since there'll never be a conflict of interest at all. I guess maybe it might look bad that faculty are dating any kind of student at all, but in this case it's a PhD student so I think it's different. What's your opinion?
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[03 Nov 2010|05:39pm]

I used to be annoyed that when I text "fuck" it defaults to "dual", but lately, it's just made functional analysis more interesting to think about.

e.g.: Let X be a set of people. Let X^* be the set of people they've "dualed" (the "dual" space of X). Show that X^** := (X^*)^* contains X.

EDIT: OK, the statement isn't necessarily true unless you exclude the possibility that X has virgins. I'd have to find a texting-homonym for "Banach" to make this fact funny, though.
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Math music? [03 Aug 2010|11:22pm]

I'm looking for songs about math or tangentially related to math, numbers, or counting. I'm specifically concerned with the lyrical content, not mathematically-devised melodies or instrumental backing (such as mathrock).

Any suggestions? So far I have:

  • Mathematics Little Boots
  • Who's Stopping You? Semisonic
  • Three Small Words (JatP Theme) Josie and the Pussycats
  • Finite Simple Group (of Order Two) The Klein Four Group
  • Wednesday Fischerspooner
  • Pi Hard 'n Phirm
  • The Multiplication Song Animaniacs
  • Sixteen Military Wives The Decemberists
  • Happy Endings The All-American Rejects
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Love and Tensor Algebra [19 Jul 2010|12:53pm]

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song about the Fibonnaci Sequence [25 Jun 2010|01:05am]

Psyche Corporation has a song called "Whirring World" about the Fibonacci Sequence.. You can hear it here:


..I couldn't find any better-quality versions on youtube as all the youtubes are of live performances so it's harder to hear the numbers distinctly.

Lyrics: http://psychecorporation.com/lyrics/ww.html

The song we're currently working on features the DNA sequence from the poliovirus, but that's not done yet.
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Bertrand Russell tattoo. [15 Jun 2010|06:20pm]

I'm having a friend design for me a Bertrand Russell tattoo and I want to have something symbolic flanking the tattoo besides just his portrait. Russell's famous paradox of course jumps to mind, but when I look up the form written in modern mathematical notation it becomes quite long (and my shoulder is quite small). I'm not sure where I can find the core defining elements written in Russell's original notation (specifically, defining a set containing all sets not containing themselves).
Can anyone help me on this or does anyone have any other ideas?
Thanks a lot.
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Math is like cake [27 May 2010|12:21pm]

Math is like cake:

It is easy and delicious to consume, (though sometimes it may be too dense and cause you to forget to feed yourself anything else that day).
If you bake one from a known recipe, it will probably be good, (unless it was designed as an excuse to use some exotic ingredient that we don't really know what to do with yet, regardless of how useful for consumption the result is).
If you don't use a recipe, when the result falls apart or tastes awful, it is not always obvious where you went wrong.
If you bake a good one without writing down what you did, it doesn't count because you'll probably never be able to reproduce it.
If you develop your own recipe, you'll find that getting it into a cookbook so that others can use it is very difficult. (But you can always post it online.)

Who can think of more ways in which math is like cake?
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Cool looking book: Meanwhile [25 May 2010|07:01pm]

A choose your own adventure book written by a pure mathematics grad that teaches you about parallel universes and quantum theory: http://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/blog/1790000379/post/1420054542.html
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Look around you: Maths [10 May 2010|09:58pm]

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Son of Godhand - an underrated meme riffs on religion [02 May 2010|04:43pm]

See panel 3 for the math referenceCollapse )

EDIT: This is an iteration of a particular meme. It doesn't quite make as much sense if you don't know that.
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[27 Apr 2010|03:41pm]

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Erotic Equations? [13 Apr 2010|06:11pm]

Erotic equations: Love meets mathematics on film | CultureLab | NewScientist -- [Sex and math may not be the most obvious pairing, but Edward Frenkel knows otherwise. The 41-year-old mathematician and professor at the University of California, Berkeley, sacrificed his clothes and €100,000 to show the world the beauty of mathematics. The result, shot in three days, is the 26-minute-long erotic film Rites of Love and Math, which premieres this week in Paris.]
4 comments|post comment

pics plz [09 Apr 2010|07:13am]

x-posted a few places

Greetings! I was wondering if a picture of Stephen Semmes (living legend/analysis professor at Rice University) existed anywhere on the Internet, or (long shot) if anyone has a picture of him and has heard him say "I don't mind if people with pictures of me distribute them." This is for a programming assignment for a class - I would like to make an animation about him. However, Google Image Search is turning up nothing and the Rice website doesn't seem to have a picture of him.

If you don't have a picture, or have a private picture I can't use, it would also be very very useful if you could tell me what he looks like so I can try and draw him.

Thank you!
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Graduate Schools? [05 Apr 2010|02:47pm]

This is perhaps the least sexy thing out there, but does anyone know when Canadian universities are sending out their acceptance / rejection letters for graduate school applicants?

I've applied to: UBC, U Alberta, U Ottawa, U Toronto, and McGill.

Any idea when they're going to reject me?
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The next Clay Millenium Prize will be awarded for ... what? [20 Mar 2010|08:14pm]
Now that Grisha Perelman became the First Clay Prize Awardee, what about the rest of the Millenium Problems?

Which of the Clay Millenium Problems do you expect to be solved next?

The Riemann Hypothesis
The Hodge Conjecture
The Birch and Swinnerton-Dyer Conjecture
The Yang--Mills Mass Gap Problem
Uniqueness and Existence of Solutions for the Navier--Stokes equation
P vs NP
7 comments|post comment

How do you pick research problems to work on? (crosspost from math_research) [30 Dec 2009|09:05pm]
Details and discussion are here. Thanks in advance for your input!
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How do you learn a new math subject? (poll crossposted from math_research) [27 Dec 2009|08:50pm]
Poll #1503463 How do you learn a new math subfield beyond your specialty?

How do you learn a new subject beyond your subfield? (Note that you can choose multiple answers)

Ask a colleague who works in the relevant subfield for the basics and the references
Look into Wikipedia (or another encyclopaedia, for that matter) and then follow the references and the links found there
Pick up several books on the subject and go for a bout of reading until you "see the light"
Pick a single book or paper and dig through it until you begin to understand it
Other (please leave a comment with details below)

The results of this poll are here. Thanks for participating!
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What I don't know that I don't know [09 Dec 2009|02:10am]

I'm at a small liberal arts university studying mathematics. I'm particularly drawn to algebra. Group theory and its (co)homology seem interesting to me. The problem I'm faced with though, is that there are only two other people in my groups class, and one was the professor. The exact same thing happened in my rings class, my galois theory class was just me and the professor. I have no friends to talk to in person about anything mathematically interesting. I'm feeling like my exposure to this stuff is really limited. When I go to the undergrad math conferences I really enjoy the atmosphere and the opportunity to discuss interesting problems. I've done a little bit of graduate algebraic topology, at a summer school, which was nice - again the company of like minded individuals was very welcome. Did anyone have a similar undergrad experience? Have they since evaporated? How can I tell if I know anything about anything or where my education stands relative to other Canadian undergrad programs?
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[08 Dec 2009|04:03pm]

Futurama vs real life. (For those of you who don't read Russian: the two words on the second photo are "grocery" and "bakery").

... throw 22 ...

5 comments|post comment

How to Slice a Bagel into Two Linked Halves [08 Dec 2009|07:48am]

Mathematically Correct Breakfast: slicing a bagel into two delicious interconnected rings.

(It's a bizarre title: I'd like to see a breakfast that wasn't mathematically correct)
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