Mathematics Talks

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Like many universities, the University of Central Florida (UCF) has had many guest speakers this semester. It is quite interesting to hear the thoughts of folks from other universities regarding mathematics and its role. Two of my favorite talks recently have been by Dr. John dePillis and Krishnaswami Alladi.

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Mathematics Awareness Month (MAM) – April 4

oNthumb04Are you participating in Mathematics Awareness Month (MAM) this year? Today’s topic pertains to mental math. Arthur Benjamin truly is impressive at his Ted Talk. Watch it below or visit http://on.ted.com/smcF. Dr. Benjamin’s website says

Dr. Arthur Benjamin is both a professor of mathematics and a magician. He has combined his two loves to create a dynamic presentation called “Mathemagics,” suitable for all audiences, where he demonstrates and explains his secrets for performing rapid mental calculations faster than a calculator. He has presented his high energy talk for thousands of groups throughout the world.

MAM has listed some challenges from Dr. Benjamin. Check them out at http://www.mathaware.org/mam/2014/calendar/mentalmath.html.

How would you stand in a mental math competition against Dr. Benjamin?

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RSA Encryption – Keeping the Internet Secure

 

A flowchart describing the process of generating a public and private key.  Photo acquired from Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

A flowchart describing the process of generating a public and private key. Photo acquired from Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

We use the Internet for many things, from reading news articles, to keeping in touch with friends on social media, to shopping from the comfort of our own homes. Many of these tasks involve sending sensitive personal information (such as credit card numbers and our home address) to complete strangers. We would like to keep this information safe, making sure no malicious third party is able to intercept our messages. RSA is a cryptosystem which is known as one of the first practicable public-key cryptosystems and is widely used for secure data transmission. RSA has stood the test of nearly 40 years of attacks, making it the algorithm of choice for encrypting Internet credit-card transactions, securing e-mail, and authenticating phone calls.

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The Analysis a Beginning Graduate Student Ought to Know

ANALYSISI take this title (with a bit of a modification) from a textbook I used during my first year of my PhD. It was a book by Jonathan Golan entitled The Linear Algebra a Beginning Graduate Student Ought to Know. Now, I did not know most of what was covered in Golan’s book, but I found much of it to be helpful. What this post will discuss is analysis, though. Analysis is this strange creature that tends to catch many grad students off guard. Disclaimer: I am not an analyst. What is here is merely my experience and how I perceive analysis. It is different. It is difficult. It is the foundations of mathematics.

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A first step for giving back to the MAA through service

Ever wonder how to get involved in the larger mathematical community? It turns out that there is a nomination procedure for the many, many MAA committees. Consider nominating yourself or others!

Nomination Form

List of Committees

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