## News from the world of Maths

Number theory is famous for problems that everyone can understand and that are easy to express, but that are fiendishly difficult to prove. Here are some of our favourites.

Rollercoasters, the London Eye, planes, bikewheels and boomerangs - no it's not our plans for the summer holidays, it's just a normal afternoon at a Maths Inspiration gig.

Did you learn at school that the angles in a triangle always add up to 180 degrees? If yes then your teacher was wrong. Find out why here.

Right. That's it. We're convinced. We are officially behind team tau! Find out why and celebrate tau day with us!

Agreeing to pay £50,000 for something worth £2 wouldn't win you any haggling competitions. In mathematics, however, a similar result can bring you international acclaim. This is the case with recent progress towards the famous twin prime conjecture.

An "electric atomosphere" is not what you expect at a maths lecture. But it is what prevailed when Andrew Wiles announced his proof of a 350-year-old-old problem, Fermat's last theorem, exactly 20 years ago.

Alan Turing was a mathematician and WWII code breaker who was convicted of homosexuality in the 1950s, chemically castrated as a result, died young in mysterious circumstances and still hasn't received all the recognition

he deserves. His life clearly makes great material for a play — but a musical? We talk to the directors and lead actor of *The Universal Machine*.

Deciding who is to blame and who should pay for the financial crisis will be a hot topic at the G8 next week. Financial mathematics received a lot of bad press in the aftermath of the crunch and many believe that it was the popularity of mathematical models – often borrowed from physics — that put the financial system at risk. But now models borrowed from biology are helping us understand how this risk might be reduced.