Amateur Mathematician Finds Smallest Universal Cover

Through exacting geometric calculations, Philip Gibbs has found the smallest known cover for any possible shape.

By: Kevin Hartnett  https://www.quantamagazine.org

Philip Gibbs is not a professional mathematician. So when he wanted a problem to chew on, he looked for one where even an amateur could make a difference. What he found was a challenge that could drive even the most exacting minds mad. In a paper completed earlier this year, Gibbs achieved a major advance on a 100-year-old question that hinges on the ability to accurately measure area down to the atomic scale. Continue reading

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Fending Off Math Anxiety

By Perri Klass, M.d.
April 24, 2017

NYTIMES.COM

My mother was what we would now call math anxious, if not phobic. My daughter, on the other hand, was a math major, which always left me feeling like the transitional generation, capable of mastering standardized-test math problems and surviving college calculus (it’s one of the pre-med requirements) but never really connecting to the beauty or power of the subject. Continue reading