## News from the world of Maths

The eyes of the world will be on London tonight as the opening ceremony will mark the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games. The ceremony will feature the largest harmonically tuned bell in Europe, there'll be NHS dancers, the Queen will be there too of course, and the grand finale will be the Olympic torch lighting the cauldron. While London has been gearing up for these momentous events, we here at *Plus* have been busy too.

Yesterday we brought you two Olympic brainteasers and here are another two. Enjoy!

While the athletes are flexing their muscles, why not train your brain with these two Olympic puzzles?

Will Britain be able to turn the home advantage into the top spot on the medal table this Games? Predicting medal counts is a tricky business, but, never afraid of a challenge, we will reveal our own predictions for the top 20 countries here on *Plus* on Friday. In the meantime, why not come up with your own mathematical method for predicting the results? To help you along, here are two articles we produced for the 2008 Games in Beijing:

What can you do to out sprint Usain Bolt to the taxi rank? Was he unlucky to lose at the Jamaican trials or is Yohan Blake really faster? Get in training for a summer of sport with a talk from John D. Barrow at the Science Museum tomorrow, 25th July. The talk is part of an evening dedicated to science and sport, part of the Science Museum Lates series.

Only four days to go until the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games! To get into the spirit, we cast our minds back to one of our favourite features of the 2008 Beijing Games: the beautiful aquatics venue, known as the *water cube*. Looking like it had been sliced from a giant bubble foam, the design was based on an unsolved maths problem. And although the bubbles look completely random, the underlying structure is highly regular and buildable.

Henri Poincaré died 100 years ago today. He is most famous for the conjecture (now theorem) which carries his name and which remained unproven for almost 100 years, until Grigori Perelman announced a proof in 2003. But the famous conjecture isn't all there was to Poincaré.

If it looks like the Higgs... and it smells like the Higgs... have we finally found it? Most physicists agree it's safe to say we've finally observed the elusive Higgs boson. And perhaps that is not all....