Welcome to this week’s Math Munch!
Recently I’ve been running across tons of neat, slick math applets. I feel like they all go together. What do they have in common? Maybe you’ll be able to tell me.
First up, you can tinker with some planetary gears. Then try out these chorded polygons. And then how about some threaded lines?
Ready for some more? Because with these sorts of visualizations, Dan Anderson has been on fire lately. Dan is a high school math teacher in New York state. He and his students had fifteen minutes of fame last year when they investigated whether or not Double Stuf Oreos really have double the stuf.
Here is Dan’s page on OpenProcessing. (Processing is the computer language in which Dan programs his applets.) And check out the images and gifs on Dan’s Tumblr. Here’s a sampling!
Dan also coordinates Daily Desmos, which we’ve feature previously. Check out the latest periodic and “obfuscation” challenges!
That’s a chunk of math to chew on already, but we’re just getting started! Next up, check out the space-filling artwork of John Shier.
John’s artwork places onto the canvas shapes of smaller and smaller sizes. Notice that the circles below fill in gaps, but they don’t touch each other, they way circles do in an Apollonian gasket.
You can learn more about John’s space-filling shapes on this page and find further details in this paper.Last up this week, head to this site to watch an awesome trailer of a film about Julia Robinson. The short clip focuses on Julia’s work on Hilbert’s tenth problem. It includes interviews with a number of people who knew Julia, including her sister Constance Reid. Constance wrote extensively about mathematics and mathematicians. I’ve read her biography of Hilbert and can highly recommend it. You can read more about Julia and Constance here and here.
With May wrapped up and June getting started, I hope you have a lot of math to look forward to this summer. Bon appetit!