# IntMath Newsletter - cookies, heartbeats and Fourier

By Murray Bourne, 30 Mar 2010

30 March 2010

In this Newsletter:

1. Cookie jars and tessellations

2. Your heartbeat and Fourier Series

3. IntMath Poll - Math and Real-world Problems

4. Latest IntMath Poll - Who are you?

5. Math Awareness Month April 2010

6. Latest from the Math Blog

7. Final thought – Commitment to excellence

Welcome to all the new subscribers! The IntMath Newsletter goes out to over 7,500 people in 165 countries.

## 1. Cookie jars and tessellations

How can we neatly stack cookies into a circular jar? This topic is related to "tessellations". Math is not only about algebra - visual design and packaging also use mathematical techniques. See more in: Cookie jar math |

## 2. Your heartbeat and Fourier Series

I recently had an ECG done and found it very interesting. This article explains how we can model the human heartbeat with a mathematical expression, using Fourier Series. |

## 3. IntMath Poll - Math and Real-world Problems

The Feb-Mar 2010 IntMath Poll revealed around 70% of students get little idea **why** they need to study math during their lessons. The question and responses were:

**I get a good understanding of how math is applied to real world problems...**

In most lessons: 31%

In some lessons: 29%

Rarely: 24%

Never: 17%

Total votes: **2200**

Students need to see how to use math, otherwise it can become a painful academic exercise!

Of course, many of us like math for its own sake, but that's not the feeling of many students.

## 4. Latest IntMath Poll - Who are you?

A new poll is up and asks readers whether they are students or instructors, or maybe retired people wanting to learn.

You can respond on any page in IntMath.com (look in the right margin when you get there).

## 5. Math Awareness Month - April 2010

April is Math Awareness Month. This year, the theme is "Mathematics and Sport".

You may also be interested in my article on: Baseball bat math

## 6. Latest from the Math Blog

## 7. Final thought – Commitment to excellence

Since this Newsletter has a sports theme, we'll finish with a gem from a famous football coach:

The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor. [Vince Lombardi]

Until next time, enjoy whatever you learn.

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