Number Theory

Aug 13

Factors + Dancing

This is a mesmerizing visualization of the prime factorization of the natural numbers. If you go to Stephen Von Worley’s site Data Pointed you get the full experience along with the ability to pause and skip forward and back. It would be very interesting to give these diagrams to students and see if they could produce a next in series diagram. If they could do that, the diagrams could be used as a way to introduce primes and prime factorizations.

Factor Diagram

I stumbled on it via Teq another great blog.

Oct 12

Math + Accounting


One of the hardest things to get students to appreciate is the positional number system. It is one those things that seems so simple and inevitable that everyone takes it for granted. It is hard to imagine what life was like before it and what was made possible because of it. This Planet Money podcast captures this enormity of this transition inside of the story of Luca Pacioli, a mathematician responsible for codifying and disseminating double entry book keeping throughout the world. The whole show is great, but if nothing else, listen to the first five minutes.

Dec 11

Mega-magic Square

magic square

Jay sent over this unbelievable magic square. I’d never seen one this large. Even better than the square was the blog he found it in, Futility Closet. It some sort of wierd mix of math and culture. I’m full out addicted.

Thanks, Jay!