Posted by: tejat | January 13, 2009

Mathemagic!

If you need a quick study break this reading period and facebook is no longer doing it for you, I really recommend checking out ted.com. The main purpose of the TED conference is to promote the spread of ideas, and the website is full of really awesome videos from the conference where speakers and performers come to do just that.  The website boasts all sorts of 20-30 minute lectures and performances, with topics ranging from ending poverty to toys that define our culture to the calculus of architecture.  I came across one video a couple weeks ago that was really incredible that I thought our class might enjoy– This guy can do unbelievable mental math. The most fascinating part, in my opinion, is at the very end, when he thinks out loud as he squares a 5-digit number in his head. To “store” some of the numbers along the way, he converts them into words… I think it would be really neat to figure out what method he uses to do that.

In any case, I hope you enjoy Mathemagic!

http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/arthur_benjamin_does_mathemagic.html

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Responses

  1. Yeah, TED is great!

    Here’s one about african villages and the mathematical patterns they contain by an “ethno-mathematician”. It’s entirely non-technical.

    http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/ron_eglash_on_african_fractals.html

    As for storing math as words, I seem to recall he explains in the video and that was one of the various strange skills I tried to learn as a kid. I don’t use it anymore, but it would be useful for telephone numbers…


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