Wild About Math!Making Math fun and accessible

14Feb/111

[ The latest Wild About Math bloggers! is at Equalis. Here is last week's edition. ]

Welcome to February!

Speaking of February, Alex Bellos has a fun article about February, leap years, different calendar systems, the golden ratio and the golden string.

Science News explores the science of bike-sharing.

While the idea [bike-sharing] is gaining speed and subscribers at the 400 locations around the world where it has been implemented, there have been growing pains -- partly because the projects have been so successful. About seven percent of the time, users aren't able to return a bike because the station at their journey's destination is full. And sometimes stations experience bike shortages, causing frustration with the system.

James Tanton has a great new YouTube video exploration: A Leap-Frog Puzzle using Vectors (Tanton: Mathematics):

Choose any three points A, B and C in the plane. Starting anywhere you like on the page, "leapfrog" over the point A to land on the other side of A the same distance from it as you started. Now leapfrog over B, and then C, and then A again, and then B again and finally C again. Something astounding happens!

God Plays Dice has an interesting article: How to win the Ontario lottery's tic-tac-toe game.

Jonah Lehrer writes for Wired on breaking a scratch-off game in the Ontario lottery. In 2003, Mohan Srivastava, a geostatistician, figured out a way to crack a tic-tac-toe game that the Ontario lottery was running at the time. In this game, you're given a set of eight three-by-three grids with numbers between one and thirty-nine on them (seventy-two numbers in total) ...

Tanya Khovanova has a fun article: Mutant Sudoku.

Tired of the same old sudoku? Here’s an opportunity to try many variations of it. Thomas Snyder and Wei-Hwa Huang wrote a book called Mutant Sudoku. The authors are both Sudoku champions. I like the book because the authors are trying to bring everyone up to their level, rather than dumbing down their puzzles. So the book is not at all boring as are most Sudoku books.

I'll leave you with a piece of trivia from Futility Closet:

20864448472975628947226005981267194447042584001 = (2 + 0 + 8 + 6 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 8 + 4 + 7 + 2 + 9 + 7 + 5 + 6 + 2 + 8 + 9 + 4 + 7 + 2 + 2 + 6 + 0 + 0 + 5 + 9 + 8 + 1 + 2 + 6 + 7 + 1 + 9 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 7 + 0 + 4 + 2 + 5 + 8 + 4 + 0 + 0 + 1)20