News from the world of maths: Maths on telly and radio

Monday, September 29, 2008

Maths on telly and radio

BBC Four will launch a new three-part TV series on maths at 9pm this coming Monday the 6th of October. In The story of maths Marcus du Sautoy, Oxford mathematician and one of the UK's finest maths popularisers, describes the often surprising lives of the great mathematicians, explains the development of the key mathematical ideas and shows how — in a multitude of unusual ways — those ideas underpin the science, technology and culture that shape our world. The first episode will look at the contributions from the ancient Greeks.

To get you into the mood, have a look at du Sautoy's Plus articles The prime number lottery, The music of the primes, and Beckham in his prime number.

If you prefer the radio, then tune into BBC Radio 4's In our time on Thursday the 9th of October at 9am and again at 9.30pm. Melvyn Bragg together with experts including John D Barrow will discuss Gödel's infamous incompleteness theorem.

posted by Plus @ 11:46 AM


At 1:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you think "The story of maths" on BBC 4, will be viewable in some format for those outside the UK?

I believe Simon Singh's "Fermat's Last Theorem" documentary originally aired on BBC, but was distributed to PBS US. I enjoyed it so much, I went out and bought the book. It would be nice to listen/watch these intelligent programs in a more timely fashion, rather than several years later :-)

I've been able to download a few BBC mp3 files and listen to them on the go.

At 4:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds very interesting! Is it possible to view BBC4 without living in the UK?

At 11:29 AM, Blogger Plus said...

As far as we can tell there's no easy way to watch BBC Four from abroad, but we're trying to find out how to get hold of the programme. We'll let you know when we know....

At 12:38 PM, Blogger Plus said...

...and you may be interested to know that one of du Sautoy's previous programmes, The music of the primes, is available on DVD from the Open University at

At 6:27 AM, Blogger westius said...

Check out this link for some interesting info on watching the BBC iPlayer outside of the UK.

In summary, you have to be a little bit dodgy to do it, but it can be done.

It's also likely that this show will pop up on youtube at some stage.

At 10:45 PM, Anonymous Supertelly said...

More recently on the excellent BBC4 there was a very interesting chemistry programme - I can't remember the name but it was like a beginner's guide, very good TV.