Tuesday, March 20, 2018
I will somehow deal with the fact that I am not allowed to have coffee on campus. :)
Sunday, March 18, 2018
(Tip of the cap to Lior Pachter.)
(Tip of the cap to Kerstin Nordstrom.)
Saturday, March 17, 2018
I like the cover of "The Magic Ring". :)
(Tip of the cap to Gabrielle Birkman.)
Here's a Fun (Alternative) Fact: The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics used to be known as "Society for Impure Mathematics" (SIM), because those of us who do applied mathematics are less pure than other types of mathematicians, bless their hearts.
But perhaps this great organization really ought to change its name to "Society for Impure Mathematics", to appease the theoretical mathematicians who like to call themselves "pure" mathematicians.
As you may have gathered, I find the phrasing "pure mathematics" to be incredibly demeaning towards applied mathematics and applied mathematicians. (The term "unadulterated mathematics" is even worse, so I suppose that my subject of choice is "adulterated mathematics".) I really dislike being considered impure, by implication of the term in use. "Pure mathematics" should really be called "theoretical mathematics", just like in every other science.
Additionally, here are two of my tweets on this and related subjects.
From now on, can we say "theoretical mathematics" instead of "pure mathematics"? It's much less obnoxious.— Mason Porter (@masonporter) August 25, 2017
From me, an impure mathematician
The Mathematics Subject Classification (MSC), required on the AMS cover sheet when applying for US mathematics faculty jobs, is very poorly suited for classifying applied mathematicians and leads to interdisciplinary applicants falling through the cracks.https://t.co/zcJ0vmArv4 pic.twitter.com/6KC4pg2f1y— Mason Porter (@masonporter) December 2, 2017
Update: I corrected the acronym (I had written "SIP"), because apparently I am having a problem with English today.
Update: If we want to preserve the acronym SIAM and don't mind a bit of redundancy, it can stand for "Society for Impure and Adulterated Mathematics". :)
Snakes appear to move. pic.twitter.com/HggajNQsHY— Akiyoshi Kitaoka (@AkiyoshiKitaoka) March 17, 2018
(Tip of the cap to Maggie Koerth-Baker.)
Friday, March 16, 2018
Here is an old article on pencil-tip fracture (by Henry Petroski). The picture below, which comes from an even earlier article, sets up the the geometry of a pencil tip.
(I was thinking about this because a 'Number 2' pencil showed up in The Grimm Legacy, which I am currently reading.)
Thursday, March 15, 2018
I have a pet peeve in the above obituary: Don't write sentences like "He wrote countless books, articles, and book reviews imbued with his personal perspective." in the obituary of a mathematician, especially if he is an analyst (with much work in numerical analysis, in this case). Trust me: it's countable (and, actually, it's finite).
For most of us, we'll be more familiar with the many essays and (especially) book reviews that Davis wrote for SIAM News.
(Tip of the cap to the SIAM Twitter account.)
I’ll soon be giving what amounts to a tutorial for my UCLA Ph.D. students, who will be embarking on writing papers, and — as I was thinking about what materials to prepare — my mind went to a dark, sarcastic place.— Mason Porter (@masonporter) March 15, 2018
(Inspiration from "Title of the Song" by Da Vinci's Notebook.) pic.twitter.com/N1n3xSY6xr
Update: It turns out that I did this so quickly that I mixed my Oxford and UCLA affiliations. Oops.
Tuesday, March 13, 2018
This is quite a correction for the misspelling of one author's name by a single letter. pic.twitter.com/PJgwmETSIj— Retraction Watch (@RetractionWatch) March 13, 2018
(Tip of the cap to Nalini Joshi, whose 'liking' of this tweet led me to find it.)
Saturday, March 10, 2018
I have a key question: Where are the best places to inflict lightning bolts on people?
In conclusion, come get some!
(Tip of the cap to Gabrielle Birkman, who indicates that there are places to get banana peels and turtle shells.)
The Buffy social network: slayage and love links. https://t.co/xwQ0DoKpAG— Peter Sheridan Dodds (@peterdodds) March 11, 2018
This figure is definite fodder for talks. Also, if somebody sets up the adjacencies, we should compute some centrality and versatility measures.