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Stories by Dana Mackenzie9 articles archived since 1845

The Talk That Wasn’t

The Talk That Wasn’t

Today I had the real privilege of hearing Manuel Blum‘s talk at the Heidelberg Laureate Forum. It was about… “Wait a minute!” I hear you saying.

September 27, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie
A Happy Mathematical Birthday

A Happy Mathematical Birthday

During yesterday’s boat ride on the Neckar River, I had the chance to interview one of the youngest participants in this year’s Heidelberg Laureate Forum: Lisa Sauermann, an undergraduate at the University of Bonn, who was celebrating her 21st birthday.

September 27, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie

Amazing Rope Trick

Here’s an amazing trick that Curtis McMullen performed in yesterday’s workshop on Quantum Mechanics and Topology, organized by Ryan Grady.

September 26, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie

Why So Few Mathematicians? Part 2

In a previous post I discussed the question of why relatively few mathematical laureates came to the Heidelberg Laureate Forum. The question has continued to be much discussed at the meeting, and I have heard at least three more theories that I think may have some validity.

September 25, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie

Dances, Billiards and Pretzels

When I came to the Heidelberg Laureate Forum, I expected a feast for my mind. I didn’t expect a feast for my eyes! Take a look at this incredible video, by Diana Davis, which was featured in today’s lecture by Fields medalist Curtis McMullen.

September 25, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie
Why So Few Mathematicians?

Why So Few Mathematicians?

I wasn’t going to write about this. I was going to keep it to myself. But then Klaus Tschira, the chairperson of the HLF Foundation, mentioned it in his welcoming speech, and he didn’t mince words.

September 23, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie
In Love with Geometry

In Love with Geometry

For generations, geometers have gotten used to not being able to see the objects that they prove theorems about. It’s a somewhat sad development in a subject that began in Euclid’s day with the splendidly visual concepts of points, lines, triangles, circles, conic sections and the like.

September 23, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie
A Warrior for the Blind

A Warrior for the Blind

Why should sighted people have all the fun? Kyle Rector, one of the young participants in this year’s Heidelberg Laureate Forum, doesn’t think they should.

September 17, 2013 — Dana Mackenzie

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