## News from the world of Maths

In our Science fiction, science fact project you told us that you'd like to know what time is. So we've gone and talked to an expert — Paul Davies — and we'll publish his response shortly. Meanwhile, we're opening our poll for the second round, to see which question you'd like to have answered next. So get voting!

Has your school been using our sister site Maths and Sport: Countdown to the Games as a learning resource? If yes, your commitment could earn you a reward from London 2012.

Mathematics is the language of the sciences, and the 2011 British Science Festival will be speaking volumes about how exciting maths can be. From events exploring the impact of maths on ground breaking scientific ideas to the role of statistics in professional sports, there's enough to bring out the mathlete in everyone.

he Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will visit Bletchley Park today to unveil a memorial to the codebreakers who played a vital role in the second world war. To celebrate their visit the Queen has challenged UK children aged between 13 and 16 to crack six secret messages.

What's a particular piece of mathematics good for? It can take decades, or even centuries for an answer to this question to materialise. In today's climate, in which scientific research is increasingly judged according to its impact, this can pose a problem for pure mathematics. Now a collection of examples of mathematical ideas that have found applications long after their discovery has been published in the journal Nature.

Sometimes people are nasty when it would have been better to be nice.

Professor John Barrow, director of the Millennium Mathematics Project (the home of Plus), wins the IMA-LMS Christopher Zeeman Medal for his work promoting mathematics to the public.

How would it feel to look in a mirror and see not your own reflection but instead how you would look as the opposite sex? You can explore this strange alternate reality at this year's Royal Society Summer Exhibition where scientists from Queen Mary, University of London and University College London will use mathematical wizardry to produce gender reversed images of faces.