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Maths in a minute: Flipping pancakes
It's pancake day, so let's imagine a stack of pancakes. Unless you are very good at making them, the pancakes are likely to come in different sizes, which makes a stack of them look very untidy. One way of ...
Marianne  22 Mar 2019  10:27  0 comments

Maths in a minute: Higher dimensions
In normal life higher dimensions smack of science fiction, but in mathematics ... and backwards – which leads us to believe we live in a threedimensional world. Every point in this world is defined by three ... this question is easy to answer and sometimes it isn't. [/maths] To find out more, read Kaluza, Klein and their story of a ...
Marianne  8 Mar 2019  09:48  0 comments

Maths in a minute: Equal temperatures
At every given point in time there are two points on the equator of the Earth that have the same temperature. How do we know this? Well, here’s a proof. Let’s look at the equatorial plane which slices through the Earth at ...
Marianne  5 Mar 2019  12:40  1 comment

Maths in a minute: How does laser interferometry work?
... means that some distances become longer and some shorter. A laser interferometer measures the resulting distance by splitting a laser ... sending each of the two beams along different directions in space (each along one of the two arms of the detector), and then ...
Marianne  28 Jan 2019  12:46  0 comments

Who's watching: Can maths exist if you can't see it?
In our Who's watching project we have been exploring the physics of observers. But observations also play a role in mathematics. We often get ideas about general results in mathematics ... sequences of rational numbers. Maths in a minute: Truth tables — A quick look at those indispensable tools ...
Marianne  17 Jan 2019  11:22  0 comments

Who's watching: The cosmic microwave background
... background (CMB). This faint glow, which originated in the Big Bang, not only confirms that the Big Bang happened at all, it also ... Background reading Maths in a minute: Einstein's general theory of relativity — What would ...
Marianne  17 Jan 2019  10:55  0 comments

Maths in a minute: The central limit theorem
The central idea in statistics is that you can say something about a whole population by looking at a smaller sample. Without this idea there ... reply Where's the maths? Permalink Submitted by Anonymous on April 20, ...
Marianne  16 Jan 2019  11:59  2 comments

Maths in a minute: Number mysteries
... the mathematician Christian Goldbach who formulated it in the middle of the eighteenth century. It states that any even natural number ... even number is the sum of at most six primes. There is a similar statement, called the weak Goldbach conjecture, which says that every ...
Marianne  2 Jan 2019  14:07  3 comments

Maths in a minute: Perfect numbers
A perfect number is a natural number whose divisors add up to the number ... the number 6 is the reason why god chose to create the world in 6 days, taking a rest on the 7th. The Greek Nicomachus of Gerasa ... to help us find them. The largest so far, discovered in December 2018, has over 49 million digits. Will we ever find another ...
Marianne  2 Jan 2019  13:59  0 comments

Maths in a minute: Truth tables
In standard mathematical logic every statement — "the cat is white", "the dog ... Q are true, otherwise it is false. This can be summarised in a truth table: P Q P AND Q T T T ...
Marianne  18 Dec 2018  16:25  0 comments