The Wandering Mathematician is wandering off to university! Hooray! Every silver lining, however, has a cloud, and it is with a heavy heart that I announce the end of weekly updates on this blog. With university maths and university life to keep me busy, I’m not sure I’ll have the time to keep researching and … More Epilogue: The Mathematical Theme Park
I’m going to be starting university in a few weeks, so I’m winding the blog down. Before I say goodbye, though, I’ve got a present (of sorts) for you. I’ve been thinking for a while about problems with this blog and the ways in which I could improve it, and I realised one thing: it … More A Going-Away Present
I’d like to talk about infinity today, and the limits of mathematics, but first I’d like to talk about chickens. Let’s say we’ve got a tribe which values chickens above all else, and let’s further say that this tribe has no concept of numbers — maybe they have words for “one” and “two”, but nothing … More The Absurdity of Infinity
Everybody knows Fermat’s Last Theorem: has no solutions for positive integers and . Most of you will know that Andrew Wiles proved this a few decades ago. What you might not have thought about is what happens when . That’s what I’m going to go through today. When , we have . This is satisfied … More A Corollary to Wiles
Welcome back! Today, we’re going to be doing something fairly revolutionary for a Wandering Mathematician post: there’s going to be exactly one number, and the rest is going to be visual. Before we get to the number, let’s take a look at some squares. If you cut this out and fold it, you can make … More Let’s Talk About Nets
Howdy again, folks. Before you get any further, here’s a little game. Take a number, any number. Add the digits. If you get a two-digit or more number, add the digits again. Keep doing that until you get a single-digit number. We call this the terminating sum of a number, denoted . For example, let’s calculate … More Adding everything!
Welcome back once again. Today, I’m going to talk to you about recurrence relations. What are those, I hear you cry? It’s very simple. A recurrence relation defines the th term of a sequence in terms of the previous ones. For example, if is the th term of the Fibbonaci sequence, then we have the recurrence … More Let’s Do It Again!