Aug 14


I got to demo a great new product last week. It is called Mathspace. It is both a web and mobile app, and the real innovation is their exercises allow you to write and check intermediate steps. And their handwriting interpreter is the best I’ve seen. It is a little hard to explain exactly what I mean. Check out the gif above.
There are other perks like adaptive learning, videos, badging, and a gradebook, but it is the above feature that really sets the app apart. The company is young and adding content. Definitely something to watch out for.

Aug 14

Pascal’s Triangle

I caught a great visualization for Pascal’s triangle on Visualizing Math’s Tumblr.

Aug 14

General Solutions to Polynomial Equations

Whenever I’m teaching the quadratic formula I love telling students that there is a formula “like the quadratic” for cubic and quartic equations, but that after that there isn’t any. They seem amazed by it. I guess because it is still amazing to me. I found a real nice graphic by the mathematical poet with each of the formulas. I’m going to pull this out next time I have that discussion so they can see what the formulas look like.

Jul 14

Fractals and Furniture

fractal furniture

I’ve been shopping for furniture for the last two weeks. Why won’t my wife take me to a store with math furniture? You might say there is no such thing as math furniture, but you’d be wrong.

The above drawer system is called the fractal 23 by Takeshi Miyakawa.

Jul 14

Math and Twitter

What can a math teacher find out about math from Twitter? I loved this Deb Costello post. I used to do the same thing before google shuttered real-time search. I loved pulling up “math” at the beginning of my classes to see all the post/updates that rolled in. It was always good for a laugh.

Jul 14

Great Mistakes

I caught a cute feature about Einstein on NPR. It is a quick 4 minute listen. It should make you feel better the next time you make a sign mistake to know that you are in great company.

Jul 14

Math + Myth

I caught an interesting article in Quartz about aspects of American culture that make it a challenging culture in which to learn math. I definitely don’t agree with all their conclusions, particularly about requiring algebra for all, but I agree with the basic observation: the problem of math education has almost nothing to do with the intelligence students.

Jun 14

Monkeys + Math

I caught a really interesting article in Science about researchers using monkeys to try and understand how the mammalian brain represents numbers. Who knew monkeys can do so much math?

Jun 14

Math + Roomates

My father sent over this great article from the New York Times on using fair division to split up rent with roommates when all rooms aren’t equal. Not only is it a nice application of math that guarantees an “envy free” living situation, but the NYT did a bang up job with the graphics. There is a Wolfram like manipulative and they give you a calculator as well. Well done, NYT!

Jun 14

Math and Harmony

harmonic curves
I caught this beautiful graphic of harmonic curves over on sadburro.