There is a poster from the “Women in Math” club circulating around the internet. The poster displayed the pictures of four faculty members in our department. It was done by a club member with good intentions but with poor judgment. It was not meant to demean women or be satirical. We value women in mathematics and their contributions, and work to promote opportunities for women to succeed in mathematics.
The vast majority of mathematical puzzles ask for the existence of a solution. It is merely an exercise when the method is known and it is more of a puzzle when the method is not clear. An algorithmic puzzle takes this further by only asking for the method itself or a property of the method. It is in this sense that much of computer science is puzzle solving. We discuss the theory behind this in the context of material taken from Martin Gardner’s Scientific American column. The answer to the following puzzle will be given:
There are five pirates dividing up 100 gold coins. Pirates are strictly ordered by seniority, are very logical and wish to live. The rule pirates use to divide gold is: (1) the most senior pirate suggests a division, (2) all pirates vote on it, (3) if at least half vote for it then it is done, otherwise the senior pirate is killed and the process starts over. What happens?
Dana Richards is an associate professor of Computer Science at George Mason University. His research is on theoretical and algorithmic topics. He has been a friend of Martin Gardner for nearly four decades and has edited Gardner’s book
The Colossal Book of Short Puzzles and Problems.
Join us at 4:00 on March 22nd to hear from Dana in 1170 TMCB.
Date: April 12th, 2018 4:00 PM 1170 TMCB
Title: Frosting Fairness, Finally!
Abstract: Many of us are familiar with how to slice a cake ensuring equal sized slices for all. But what about those of us who want an equal amount of frosting as well?! This question is a classic with the problem solvers amongst us. In 1975, Martin Gardner considered a square cake cut into 7 pieces in his Scientific American column. More than a decade earlier, H.S.M. Coxeter posed the problem for a square cake sliced into 9 pieces as an exercise in his book, Introduction to Geometry. Together, we will solve this problem for a square cake cut into 5 pieces, and investigate the other cake shapes for which the same procedure will produce slices with equal cake and frosting.
Bio: Alissa S. Crans has been recognized nationally for her enthusiastic ability to share and communicate mathematics, having been honored by the MAA with the Hasse Prize and Alder Award. Her research lies in the field of higher-dimensional algebra and is currently supported by a Simons Foundation Collaboration Grant. Alissa is known for her active mentoring of women and underrepresented students, as well as of junior faculty as a member of the MAA Project NExT leadership team. When not enticing students with the beauty of mathematics at Loyola Marymount University or sharing her enthusiasm for math in settings ranging from “Nerd Night Los Angeles” to public school classrooms, you can find her rehearsing with the Santa Monica College Wind Ensemble or on her quest to find the spiciest salsa in LA.
Adam Rich of Beasley Insurance will discus ways that math is used in his career. The event will take place on December 7th 2017 in TMCB 1170 at 4:30PM. Refreshments will be served.
The college of physical and mathematical sciences student alumni networking dinner is Thursday, November 16th at 6:30 PM in the Hinckley Center 3rd Floor Assembly Hall. Please RSVP at TinyURL.com/cpmsnetworkingdinner
BYU recently honored Associate Chair Dr. Todd Fisher by presenting him with the Young Scholar Award during the 2017 Annual University Conference. Only given to three faculty members per year, and within the first ten years of their appointment, this award commends Dr. Fisher for his excellent research in Dynamical Systems. According to Dr. Fisher, Dynamical Systems is primarily concerned with the mathematics that studies complicated systems and how they evolve in time. Department faculty members nominated Dr. Fisher who was then selected by the university committee to receive the award.
Join us on October 12th at 4:30 pm in 1170 TMCB to learn from Math Interns past experiences. We’ll have students that interned at the following: Goldman Sachs, NSA, Lawrence Livermore, Intermountain Healthcare, Harvard University, Amazon, Federal Reserve and the FBI. Refreshments will be served.
BYU Independent Study’s team of over 90 tutors is an impressive group of intellectual coaches—they can help you learn anything from Economics to World Languages. BYU Math is proud to announce that out of the multitudes of tutors from many disciplines, BYU-IS presented their “Tutor of the Year” award to our very own Math 110 TA, Robert Glasgow!
Wendy Simmerman, with BYU-IS, said, “Robbie received the top award for his excellent interactions with students, and also for the initiative, creativity, and dedication he exhibits in working with math students.” If any of you have worked with him, you know that that statement is not an exaggeration. Robbie’s fellow tutors and others admire the way he works, and because of that, they nominated him for this awesome award.
Robert is the best of the best—because our entire team of tutors really are the best. If you have ever had questions in algebra, trigonometry, statistics, or calculus, then you have probably worked firsthand with one of our amazing tutors. If you have not, you are missing out. The Math Lab is open almost every day for students who want a little extra help, and if that’s not enough, you can schedule an appointment with a tutor through the Independent Study Website.
Here is an entertaining video about BYU-IS and the Math Lab–https://youtu.be/fAqBcVLkh_I
Don’t just take our word for it–check it out!
This year, we are excited to announce the first ever Math Study Abroad!! For three weeks in the spring, students will be traveling around eight different European and Scandinavian countries. Led by our Department Chair Michael Dorff, we will visit companies abroad to see the different ways the skills students learn in the classroom are being applied to many different fields of work. We are thrilled to be offering this experience that is sure to be unforgettable for all those who participate!
We are accepting applications now. To apply, click here.