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IntMath Newsletter: Fish, brain games

By Murray Bourne, 29 May 2012

29 May 2012

In this Newsletter:

1. Modeling fish stocks
2. National Geographic - memory game and brain interactive
3. Scope of the IntMath Newsletter
4. Math puzzles
5. Friday math movies
6. Final thought - Try!

1. Modeling fish stocks

Atlantic cod

How can we use math to save collapsing fish stocks? Mathematical modeling is the key. This is an important real-life application of math.

Modeling fish stocks

2. National Geographic - memory game and brain interactive

I came across these on the National Geographic site recently.

Memory game (this is an interesting twist on the normal memory games you've played before)

Brain interactive (this allows you to see what happens in the brain when we form memories)

3. Scope of the IntMath Newsletter

When people subscribe to the IntMath Newlsetter, they can indicate topics they would like me to cover.

I now have (literally) thousands of topic requests, and it would take several lifetimes to get through them all! Of course, I choose the topics which are most often requested.

The scope of topics in the Newsletter will generally follow the scope of the site. That is, basic number and algebra, through matrices, logarithms, trigonometry, to calculus (including Fourier Series and Laplace Transform).

That's already a very broad scope!

4. Math puzzles

The answer to the math puzzle in the last Newsletter was r. The best answers were by Sheldon, Guido and Tomas, because they showed reasons for their correct answers.

Latest puzzle: We are designing an East-West roadway which has a curve consisting of the arcs of 2 identical circles as shown. The straight portions are 900 m apart, and the width of the curved portion is 1200 m. The straight portions of road are tangent to the circles, and the arcs themselves have a common tangent where they meet.


What is the radius of the 2 circles?

You can reply here in the comments.

6. Friday math movie

Religions and babies

Hans Rosling on Religions and babies

Does religion have an impact on human fertility? Hans Rosling always gives an energetic and thought-provoking presentation.

Friday math movie: Hans Rosling on Religions and babies

7. Final thought - Try!

Many math students give up because they feel it's all too hard. This is a shame, because often it only takes a little bit of reading, or trying a few easier problems, or thinking about the big picture and then insight can occur. (I love those "ahhh - got it!" moments.)

Ralph Waldo Emerson, American writer and lecturer, influenced later ideals of freedom and individualization in the US. He could have been talking to math students when he wrote:

Neither you nor the world knows what you can do until you have tried. [Ralph Waldo Emerson]

Until next time, enjoy whatever you learn.

See the 19 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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