## Lattices, Plane and Not-So-Plane

Suppose this blog’s editor Ursula and I want to create a shared secret to use as a password to access this blog post... Lattices, Plane and Not-So-Plane Courtney Gibbons Hamilton College In January 2023, Bill Casselman wrote a great column introducing readers to lattices that imagined them as vectors inRead More →

## Elliptic curves come to date night

Willa is an economist and Cara is a mathematician, so together they have decided to turn the problem of which game to play into a separate meta-game. Because they both love numbers, Willa and Cara start by creating matrices... Elliptic curves come to date night Ursula Whitcher Mathematical Reviews (AMS)Read More →

Inevitably, I think back to my favorite result in mathematics: when Diaconis used the representation theory of the symmetric group to show us that psychologists just don’t get along… What I Think About When I Think About Voting Sarah Wolff Denison University It’s November. Here in Ohio, that means cozyRead More →

## Putting a period on mathematical physics

One of the fundamental forces in the universe is the weak force. The weak force is involved in holding atoms together or breaking them apart... Putting a period on mathematical physics Ursula Whitcher Mathematical Reviews (AMS) You've heard of periods at the ends of sentences and periods of sine waves.Read More →

## A Different Sense of Distance

There are other ways to compare rational numbers, especially if one happens to enjoy number theory... A Different Sense of Distance Maria Fox Oklahoma State University Dedicated to my Dad, Dr. Barry R. Fox. The idea of distance is central to so much of the mathematics we do and teachRead More →

## Perspectives on Polynomials (it’s a witch!)

Polynomials, it turns out, are useful for more than just input-output assignments! Perspectives on Polynomials (it’s a witch!) Courtney Gibbons Hamilton College It was a dark and stormy night… Okay, it was probably more like 3:30 in the afternoon on a crisp fall day back when I was teaching CalcRead More →

## What will they do when quantum computers start working?

Mathematically, the most intriguing of the new proposals use lattices for message encryption… What will they do when quantum computers start working? Bill Casselman University of British Columbia Commercial transactions on the internet are invariably passed through a process that hides them from unauthorized parties, using RSA public key encryptionRead More →

## Hyperoperations, Distributivity, and the Unreasonable Effectiveness of Multiplication

In 1915, the paper “Note on an Operation of the Third Grade” by Albert A. Bennett appeared in the Annals of Mathematics. A terse two-page note, it was largely neglected until the early 2000s… Hyperoperations, Distributivity, and the Unreasonable Effectiveness of Multiplication Anil Venkatesh Adelphi University Iterated Operations Everyone knowsRead More →

## Eight-dimensional spheres and the exceptional $E_8$

What is the $E_8$ lattice that appears in Viazovska's proof? What makes it special? How do you use it to pack spheres? Eight-dimensional spheres and the exceptional $E_8$ Ursula Whitcher Mathematical Reviews (AMS) In Helsinki this summer, Ukrainian mathematician Maryna Viazovska was awarded a Fields Medal "for the proof thatRead More →

## Applied Algebra: A Variety Show

I’m pretty sure the etiquette of puzzle creation insists that a “good” puzzle has a unique solution—but bear with me! I promise I’m breaking the rules of etiquette for a good reason! Applied Algebra A Variety Show Courtney Gibbons Hamilton College My interest in applied algebra was a long timeRead More →