Month: March 2006

The Murder Room

Just finished listening to the audio CD version of The Murder Room, by P.D. James. It makes an interesting contrast to the Greg Bear novel that I discussed in yesterday’s post. (No, I don’t find it confusing to listen to… Read More ›

Darwin's Children

I’m currently reading the last chapter of Greg Bear’s Darwin’s Children, the sequel to Darwin’s Radio, which I read last month. I wish I liked this one better than I do. You know how sometimes you have the experience of… Read More ›

A billion is a substantial number

According to an Associated Press article, dated yesterday, “a billion is a substantial number.” I don’t think we can disagree with that. But the context is, shall we say, a bit implausible: Federal authorities investigating a man who smuggled money… Read More ›

Pi Day

Today, of course, was Pi Day. One of my mathematically devoted students not only baked brownies decorated with the digits of pi — only a small fraction of them, alas 🙂 — but also brought in a CD of “Mathematical… Read More ›

George Bush, student of English

One of my students is having great difficulty understanding the abstract ideas of additive and multiplicative inverses and identities, especially in the context of matrix algebra. Finally he’s so frustrated that he exclaims, “I feel like George Bush in an… Read More ›

Skepticism is a virtue

One of my tenth-graders gleefully tells me about a CS professor at the University of Wisconsin who held a contest in which he challenged others to “hack” into his Mac, and someone did so in 30 minutes. At least that… Read More ›