An argument from continuity

Two sophomores approached my colleague Josh with a question: “How can we construct a fair 5-sided die?” Josh posed a prior question: Is it even possible to construct such a die? He fashioned an interesting argument from continuity: Consider two… Read More ›

The view from college math

Rudbeckia Hirta (a clever pseudonym for a math professor who carefully keeps her true identity hidden) observes: Due to reasons beyond my understanding, high school math and college math are completely unaligned. The K-12 system sends us students whose knowledge… Read More ›

Where visuals fail

Some of us couldn’t possibly forget the 1969 draft lottery, the new and supposedly “fair” system to pick who was going to be sent to Vietnam. My Algebra 2 class is studying probability and was remarkably interested in learning about… Read More ›

Martin Gardner for pennies

The Mathematical Association of America is selling a CD containing 15 Martin Gardner books (the entire collection of his Scientific American columns) for a mere $55.95 — or $44.95 if you’re a member!

Risks and probabilities

We know that both adults and kids are notoriously bad at estimating probabilities. Bruce Schneier (one of the world’s leading experts on security, cryptography, etc.) has this to say concerning risks and probabilities: One of the things I routinely tell… Read More ›