## News from the world of Maths

Oooh! It's only 222 days until the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games! Eagerly clutching our tickets to the women's handball quarter finals we've been going around gathering some Olympic material for you. Here's what we found.

2012 is Turing year, celebrating 100 years since the great mathematician and code breaker's birth. We'll be joining in the celebrations, but here's a little preview.

*Plus* has been working with lots of fascinating, funny and famous mathematicians over the years. And since we've started producing podcasts in 2007, we can bring their voices directly to your ears. From Roger Penrose and Paul Davies to the science writer Simon Singh and the engineers behind the London 2012 velodrome, find out what they have to say.

Our cities are filled with buildings, roads, cars, buses, trains, bikes, parks and gardens. They are crisscrossed with power, water, sewage and transport systems. They are built by engineers, architects, planners, technologists, doctors, designers and artists. Our cities are shaped by our environment, our society and our culture. And each and every part is built on mathematics. Join Rachel Thomas, co-editor of *Plus*, in a public lecture exploring the maths in our cities.

Having trouble wrapping your presents? Paper always ends up in a mess? Well, whatever geometrical shape you've accidentally produced, we bet it's not as wonderful as these favourites.

Snow flakes, ice crystals, beautiful round baubles — Christmas is the time of symmetry, so here's a few articles to celebrate it!

Maths is a creation of our brains, so how come it describes the world around us so amazingly well? How is it that

ideas from pure maths suddenly find real-world applications decades or even centuries after their discovery? Here are some articles exploring the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics.

"It's a great day for particle physics," says Ben Allanach, a theoretical physicist at the University of Cambridge. "It's very exciting, I think we're on the verge of the Higgs discovery." And indeed, it seems like the Large Hadron Collider at CERN has given particle physics an early Christmas present — compelling evidence that the famous Higgs boson exists.