that,as I've mentioned, the reason I'm using email to update is that
Blogger loads very slowly on my phone. So if you comment here, I won't
see it for a while. I'm not discouraging comments, I'm just saying
talk amongst yourselves. If you want to talk to ME, email is the way
MEN OF MATHEMATICS
That's the name of a book by E.T. Bell in 1936 I just finished, and I
highly recommend it to anyone teaching a math curriculum based on the
French model. It highlights the major advances in math from Zeno up to
Cantor, and it's fascinating to find how strong a historical (if not
pedagogical) basis our curriculum has.
I AM A NERD
Not just because I've read the book. Not even because it makes me want
to study advanced math. I'm a nerd because I've spent several
delightful mornings trying to independently prove Fermat's Theorem*,
as well as solve one or two geometric puzzlers.
*Not Fermat's LAST Theorem (x^n + y^n = z^n has no integer solutions
for n>2), which I suspect requires something akin to algebraic
numbers, well beyond my capabilities. Fermat's Theorem** is for any
whole number n and any prime p, the result of (n^p - n) is divisible
**Please don't tell me the solution, I'm wholly aware that Leibniz
solved it centuries ago. The point is that it requires no advanced
mathematical knowledge, and I want to see if I can do it.
Character limit again. Obviously I need to either update even more
frequently or learn to be more concise. That's not true. I CAN be more
concise-if college teaches you how to turn a one page concept into a
10 page essay, grad school teaches the much more difficult skill of
reducing 10 pages of work into a 1 page summary. But that's not really
the point of a journal, is it?
To be continued...again...