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IntMath Newsletter: Curved surface solution, Mathapedia

By Murray Bourne, 10 Apr 2014

10 Apr 2014

In this Newsletter:

1. Solution for the range hood problem
2. Resource - Mathapedia
3. IntMath polls
4. Math puzzles
5. Friday math movie - 8 math talks to blow your mind
6. Final thought - Despicable

1. Range hood curved sides problem

range hood

Last newsletter I posed a problem regarding a stove range hood with curved sides.

I usually get about 10 responses to each puzzle, but this time there was just one reply, which said "It's very hard!".

Here's my go at a solution. My first attempts were to make it much more complicated than it needs to be.

Range hood curved sides solution

2. Mathapedia


Mathapedia is an interesting devlopment by Dan Lynch. It's a system for developing online math documents, and it produces output for all sorts of devices, including tablets and phones.

It easily produces interactive math documents, like this example: Interactive (run your mouse over any of the diagrams on that page).

There's also an interesting section on The Art of Digital Publishing.

3. IntMath poll - good teaching

The recent IntMath poll asked readers,

What's the main thing teachers should do so you learn better?

There is some good advice to follow here, especially for math teachers. Obviously, there are not many friendly math classes out there! Here are the results.

Create a warm and friendly classroom: 26%

Be enthusiastic: 24%

Be flexible: 21%

Love learning: 11%

Respect students more: 11%

Set high expectations: 8%

Total votes: 2000

Poll date: Feb - Apr 2014

Latest poll: The current poll asks what kind of math you will find most useful in the future. You can respond on any (inner) page of IntMath.

4. Math puzzles

I already talked about last Newsletter's puzzle above.

New math puzzle

For integers A, B, how many solutions (A, B) are there for

A2 + B2 ≤ 12?

Please leave your responses here.

5. Math movies - 8 math talks to blow your mind

There are some really good thought provoking videos here. I've featured some of them in the past. I hope you find something to blow your mind!


TED has an incredibly broad range of really good talks.

This collection of provocative math talks has been around for a while now, but they're still worth a look.

8 math talks to blow your mind

6. Final thought: Despicable

Here's a great quote from Rockefeller, 19th century billionaire businessman and philanthropist. He was also founder of both the University of Chicago and Rockefeller University and funded the establishment of Central Philippine University in the Philippines. [Source]

I know of nothing more despicable and pathetic than a man who devotes all the hours of the waking day to the making of money for money's sake. [John D. Rockefeller]

Until next time, enjoy whatever you learn.

See the 14 Comments below.

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HTML: You can use simple tags like <b>, <a href="...">, etc.

To enter math, you can can either:

  1. Use simple calculator-like input in the following format (surround your math in backticks, or qq on tablet or phone):
    `a^2 = sqrt(b^2 + c^2)`
    (See more on ASCIIMath syntax); or
  2. Use simple LaTeX in the following format. Surround your math with \( and \).
    \( \int g dx = \sqrt{\frac{a}{b}} \)
    (This is standard simple LaTeX.)

NOTE: You can mix both types of math entry in your comment.


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