Steven Strogatz writes about the elements of mathematics in the NY Times

Yesterday the mathematician Steven Stragatz wrote the first article in a mulit-part series for the NY Times. In this first article, called From Fish to Infinity, he describes his intent.

Crazy as it sounds, over the next several weeks… I’ll be writing about the elements of mathematics, from pre-school to grad school, for anyone out there who’d like to have a second chance at the subject — but this time from an adult perspective. It’s not intended to be remedial. The goal is to give you a better feeling for what math is all about and why it’s so enthralling to those who get it.

So, let’s begin with pre-school.

I’m very interested in to see what Steve has to write on this topic. I’ll re-post the links here as they come out.

List of his essays [updated each time a new one appears]:

  1. From Fish to Infinity (1/31/10)
  2. Rock Groups (2/7/10)
  3. The Enemy of My Enemy (2/14/10)
  4. Division and Its Discontents (2/21/10)
  5. The Joy of x (2/28/10)
  6. Finding Your Roots (3/7/10)
  7. Square Dancing (3/14/10)
  8. Think Globally (3/21/10)
  9. Power Tools (3/28/10)
  10. Take it to the Limit (4/4/10)
  11. Change we Can Believe In (4/11/10)
  12. It Slices, It Dices (4/18/10)
  13. Chances Are (4/25/10)
  14. Group Think (5/2/10)
  15. The Hilbert Hotel (5/9/10)


  1. David says:

    I was lucky enough to have a similar opportunity to write some articles for the Bangkok post with the same theme. It’s a lot of fun for the writer as you have so many choices of things you can write about.

    1. That’s cool. Are your articles online? Do you have a link?

  2. sherifffruitfly says:

    Thanks for the heads up. I was gratified to see that the writer is an actual mathematician, as opposed to some schlub with an education degree.

    1. juno says:

      pupils have trouble learning math–and end up hating math–because of teachers with a condescending attitude like yours.

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