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https://plus.maths.org/content/issue/issue/13
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https://plus.maths.org/content/issue13
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<span class="date-display-single">January 2001</span> </div>
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<p>Why did no-one dare make a move during the Cuban Missile Crisis? What is game theory and how does it explain stalemates? And why can't humans walk as quickly as they can run? This issue explains it all!</p>
13indexTue, 01 Jun 2010 12:22:40 +0000plusadmin5202 at https://plus.maths.org/contentGame theory and the Cuban missile crisis
https://plus.maths.org/content/game-theory-and-cuban-missile-crisis
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Steven J. Brams </div>
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<b>Steven J. Brams</b> uses the Cuban missile crisis to illustrate the Theory of Moves, which is not just an abstract mathematical model but one that mirrors the real-life choices, and underlying thinking, of flesh-and-blood decision makers. </div>
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<div class="pub_date">January 2001</div>
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<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/game-theory-and-cuban-missile-crisis" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/game-theory-and-cuban-missile-crisis#comments13chickengame theorymixed strategynash equilibriumstable strategystrategytheory of movesMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2174 at https://plus.maths.org/contentPrize specimens
https://plus.maths.org/content/prize-specimens
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Mark Wainwright </div>
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Last October, two mathematicians won £1m when it was revealed that they were the first to solve the Eternity jigsaw puzzle. It had taken them six months and a generous helping of mathematical analysis. <b>Mark Wainwright</b> meets the pair and finds out how they did it. </div>
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<p>Alex Selby and Oliver Riordan, two mathematicians, with the help of a couple of computers, have shared a £1m prize by solving the "Eternity" puzzle. The puzzle was like an enormously difficult jigsaw. There were 209 pieces, all different, but all made from equilateral triangles and half-triangles, as in the example on the left.<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/prize-specimens" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/prize-specimens#comments13bayes theoremcomputer searcheternity gamegrid problemspacking problemsplane geometryprobabilitytilingMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2175 at https://plus.maths.org/contentLight attenuation and exponential laws
https://plus.maths.org/content/light-attenuation-and-exponential-laws
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Ian Garbett </div>
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Arguably, the exponential function crops up more than any other when using mathematics to describe the physical world. In the first of two articles on physical phenomena which obey exponential laws, <b>Ian Garbett</b> discusses light attenuation - the way in which light decreases in intensity as it passes through a medium. </div>
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<h2>Introduction</h2>
<p>In 1947 a young Bedouin shepherd found some ancient scrolls while investigating a small opening in the cliffs near the western shores of the Dead Sea. Three ancient scrolls were made from leather, wrapped in decayed linen, and were covered in ancient scripts.</p>
<p><img src="/issue13/features/garbett/scrolls.gif" /></p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/light-attenuation-and-exponential-laws" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/light-attenuation-and-exponential-laws#comments13exponential lawLambert Law of Absorptionlight attenuationlimitlogarithmic decaymathematical modellingradiationattenuationMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2176 at https://plus.maths.org/contentModelling, step by step
https://plus.maths.org/content/modelling-step-step
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R. McNeill Alexander </div>
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<img class="imagefield imagefield-field_abs_img" width="100" height="100" alt="" src="https://plus.maths.org/content/sites/plus.maths.org/files/issue13/features/walking/icon.jpg?978307200" /> </div>
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Why can't human beings walk as fast as they run? And why do we prefer to break into a run rather than walk above a certain speed? Using mathematical modelling, <b>R. McNeill Alexander</b> finds some answers. </div>
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<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/modelling-step-step" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/modelling-step-step#comments13accelerationbiomechanicskinetic energymathematical modellingpotential energyworkMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2177 at https://plus.maths.org/contentCareer interview: Science communicator
https://plus.maths.org/content/career-interview-science-communicator
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Mike Pearson </div>
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<p><b>Jenni Barker</b> is an astrophysicist. At least, that was the subject of her degree at <a href="http://www.bham.ac.uk/physics/">Birmingham University</a> - but since then she's moved into the realm of communication and journalism where she still finds a use for her scientific and mathematical training. We went to see her at <a href="http://www.nesta.org.uk/flash.html">NESTA's</a> office in
Upper Thames St., in the beautifully renovated Fishmongers Chambers.</p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/career-interview-science-communicator" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/career-interview-science-communicator#comments13career interviewHealth & SocietyScience & EngineeringScience journalismMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2398 at https://plus.maths.org/contentPuzzle page
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A greek soldier, and a persion soldier walk into a battle... </div>
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<h2>Spies Passing in the Night</h2>
<p>The Persian and Greek armies march along a straight road at (different) constant speeds. They spy on each other by sending scouts back and forth on foot or on horseback. The scouts also travel at constant speeds (not necessarily at the same speed as each other). A traveller is walking at constant speed along the road between the two armies.<div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-sol-link">
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<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/puzzle-page-3" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/puzzle-page-3#comments13puzzleMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin2839 at https://plus.maths.org/content'Computers, Ltd.'
https://plus.maths.org/content/computers-ltd
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<h2>Computers Ltd.: what they <i>really</i> can't do</h2>
<p>By David Harel<br />
Reviewed by <a href="/people/#mark">Mark Wainwright</a></p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/computers-ltd" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/computers-ltd#comments13book reviewMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin3290 at https://plus.maths.org/content'The Pleasures of Counting'
https://plus.maths.org/content/pleasures-counting
<div class="pub_date">January 2001</div>
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<h2>The Pleasures of Counting</h2>
<p>by Tom Korner<br />
Reviewed by <a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/../../../people/index.html#helen">Helen Joyce</a> (Plus Editorial team)</p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/pleasures-counting" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/pleasures-counting#comments13book reviewMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin3291 at https://plus.maths.org/content'For All Practical Purposes'
https://plus.maths.org/content/all-practical-purposes
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<h2>For all Practical Purposes: Mathematical Literacy in Today's World</h2>
<p>By COMAP<br />
Reviewed by John Barrow (Director of the <a href="http://mmp.maths.org/">Millennium Mathematics Project</a>)</p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/all-practical-purposes" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/all-practical-purposes#comments13book reviewMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin3292 at https://plus.maths.org/content'Taking Chances'
https://plus.maths.org/content/taking-chances
<div class="pub_date">January 2001</div>
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<h2>Taking Chances</h2>
<p>by John Haigh<br />
Reviewed by <a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/../../../people/index.html#helen">Helen Joyce</a> (Plus editorial team)</p>
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<p><i>Misunderstanding of probability may be the greatest of all impediments to scientific literacy</i></p>
<p align="right">Stephen Jay Gould</p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/taking-chances" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/taking-chances#comments13book reviewMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin3293 at https://plus.maths.org/contentMathematical mysteries: Getting the most out of life - Part 1
https://plus.maths.org/content/mathematical-mysteries-getting-most-out-life-part-1
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Mark Wainwright </div>
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<p>There are many sorts of games played in a "bunco booth", where a trickster or sleight-of-hand expert tries to relieve you of your money by getting you to place bets - on which cup the ball is under, for instance, or where the queen of spades is. Lots of these games can be analysed using probability theory, and it soon becomes obvious that the games are tipped heavily in favour of the trickster!</p>
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<p>There are many sorts of games played in a "bunco booth", where a trickster or sleight-of-hand expert tries to relieve you of your money by getting you to place bets - on which cup the ball is under, for instance, or where the queen of spades is. Lots of these games can be analysed using probability theory, and it soon becomes obvious that the games are tipped heavily in favour of the
trickster! The punter is well advised to steer clear.<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/mathematical-mysteries-getting-most-out-life-part-1" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/mathematical-mysteries-getting-most-out-life-part-1#comments13Mathematical mysteriesMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin4746 at https://plus.maths.org/contentGetting the most out of life - Part 2
https://plus.maths.org/content/getting-most-out-life-part-2
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Mark Wainwright </div>
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<p>The idea is this. To start with, you will choose an envelope at random, say by tossing a coin, and look at its contents, which is a cheque for some number - say n. (By randomising like this, you can be sure I haven't subconsciously induced you to prefer one envelope or the other.) You want to make sure that the bigger the number is, the more likely you are to keep it, in other words, the less likely you are to swap.</p>
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<p>The idea is this. To start with, you will choose an envelope at random, say by tossing a coin, and look at its contents, which is a cheque for some number - say <i>n</i>. (By randomising like this, you can be sure I haven't subconsciously induced you to prefer one envelope or the other.) You want to make sure that the bigger the number is, the more likely you are to keep it, in other
words, the less likely you are to swap.</p><p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/getting-most-out-life-part-2" target="_blank">read more</a></p>https://plus.maths.org/content/getting-most-out-life-part-2#comments13Mathematical mysteriesMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin4747 at https://plus.maths.org/contentOpinion
https://plus.maths.org/content/opinion-0
<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/opinion-0" target="_blank">read more</a></p>13Arrow's theoremeditorialpublic image of mathematicssocial choiceUS Presidential electionsvoting systemsMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin4863 at https://plus.maths.org/contentLetters
https://plus.maths.org/content/letters-2
<p><a href="https://plus.maths.org/content/letters-2" target="_blank">read more</a></p>13editorialMon, 01 Jan 2001 00:00:00 +0000plusadmin4921 at https://plus.maths.org/content