Monday, October 14, 2013

Monday Meanderings

4-ingredient potpourri today...:

1) As a follow-up to Friday's post here's an interesting and more general recent article on the "Fields Medal" for mathematics (includes a couple of audio-casts):

2) This week's NY Times "Wordplay" column again focuses on Martin Gardner, and again includes a quotation that's too wonderful not to pass along. This is from Gardner's editor, Robert Weil:
"Martin just didn’t care about money. I think you find with some overly creative people they can be overly generous. They undervalue their own work. Sometimes creative people have agents to counterbalance this tendency but Martin didn’t believe in agents.
"Martin was an Oklahoma boy who happened to be a genius. He was the opposite of pretentious. He was something out of the Wizard of Oz. To know Martin — he was something out of a time warp. He lived in his stories. He lived in Lewis Carroll. He was frozen in the land of Oz. Part of him is Dorothy just skipping." 
I love that imagery, Martin Gardner as "Dorothy just skipping." The whole puzzle column is here:

3) Yet another very interesting interview with Edward Frenkel, the current mathematician du jour! ;-) (and author of "Love and Math"):

4) Finally, on the education front, West Coast Khan Academy and East Coast Phillips Academy (a premier New England prep school) are planning to collaborate on a first-year calculus course, hopefully to be ready before end of 2014. "The goal for the offering is to provide a personalized and adaptive instructional program for students":

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