Articles

Calculus is a collection of tools, such as differentiation and integration, for solving problems in mathematics which involve "rates of change" and "areas". In the first of two articles aimed specially at students meeting calculus for the first time, Chris Sangwin tells us about these tools - without doubt, the some of the most important in all of mathematics.
Marcus du Sautoy begins a two part exploration of the greatest unsolved problem of mathematics: The Riemann Hypothesis. In the first part, we find out how the German mathematician Gauss, aged only 15, discovered the dice that Nature used to chose the primes.
Human beings are famously prone to error, and proof-readers are, after all, only human. But who picks up the errors a proof-reader misses? John D. Barrow challenges readers to estimate the errors that aren't found from the errors that are.
All of science can be regarded as motivated by the search for rules behind the randomness of nature, and attempts to make prediction in the presence of uncertainty. Chris Budd describes the search for pattern and order in chaos.
The 2003 Dirac Lecturer, distinguished physicist Freeman Dyson, tells Plus why he is an optimist, what makes life interesting and why old-fashioned maths is what you need for physics.