Monthly Archives: September 2010

I Love Math – And It Makes Me Sad

I love the game of Go, I love golf, I love my wife, and I love math – and this makes me sad. I love the game of Go – the heft and smoothness of the stones, the sound of … Continue reading

Posted in Math and Me | 1 Comment

I Calculate the Digits of Pi – Very Slowly

Years ago I wrote an assembly language routine that drew circles with  a pen plotter.  This entailed approximating the arc of a circle with a series of small horizontal and vertical steps.  I was proud of the method because its … Continue reading

Posted in Cool Ideas, Math Explorations | 1 Comment

Highly Effective Students

There was a time when I turned to the popular business improvement literature for ideas on how to be a better teacher.  I reasoned that since a business is necessarily grounded in reality, by its profit and loss statement if … Continue reading

Posted in Pedagogy | Leave a comment

Completing the Square: Two Forms – Two Methods

Consider two expansions of ,  and .  These expressions are algebraically equivalent yet each contains an implicit point of view that leads to a different method for completing the square. Let’s look at a specific problem.  Express in the standard … Continue reading

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How I Lost My Faith In Mathematics

I like to read math books and work math problems while I have lunch in my office.  I tried to solve this problem from The Contest Problem Book IV [1]. Since I didn’t make much progress save noticing the implicit … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments