Madison Math Circle Abstracts

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September 18 2017

Daniel Erman
Title: Welcome to the Madison Math Circle!

Abstract: At the Madison Math Circle, we aim to give a flavor for the creative type of thinking that goes into mathematical research. In this week's interactive activity, students will explore questions related to Mobius strips, developing their own conjectures.

September 25 2017

Betsy Stovall
Title: Math is a game!

When mathematicians are working to solve a theoretical problem, it often helps to imagine that we are playing a game: What could our opponent do to make our job as difficult as possible, and what is our strategy to defeat them no matter what move they make? In this session, we will try this out by playing several games and trying to come up with winning strategies.

October 2 2017

Rachel Davis
Title: Thinking outside the box

Abstract: We will try some geometric puzzles related to area, volume, and dimension using techniques such as drawing diagrams, looking at special cases, using symmetry, and changing perspective.

October 9 2017

Solly Parenti
Title: Hackenbush

Abstract: I come from an alien world where we spend all of our time playing a game called hackenbush. I'd like to introduce y'all to this game so you don't embarass yourself if you come visit my planet.

October 16 2017

Mihaela Ifrim
Title: Escape of the Clones!

Abstract: We wish to find an invariant (an invariant is a quantity that doesn't change no matter how the process plays out). By playing couple of games will help us find some! The main game we will play is Escape of the Clones! Promise you will like it!

October 23 2017

Ryan Julian
Title: Recursion for Fun and Profit

Abstract: Beginning with the classic Towers of Hanoi puzzle, we'll explore several puzzles whose solutions can often be found by thinking recursively. We'll also discover how recursion and related methods of simplifying problems can be used to create efficient algorithms to solve a variety of practical problems.

October 30 2017

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November 6 2017

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November 13 2017

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November 20 2017

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January 29 2018

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February 5 2018

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February 12 2018

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February 19 2018

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February 26 2018

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March 5 2018

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March 12 2018

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March 19 2018

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April 2 2018

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April 9 2018

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Off-Site Meetings

October 2 2017 (East High School)

Speaker TBD
Title: How to make it as a Hackenbush player in the planet Zubenelgenubi 4

Abstract: In the distant planet of Zubenelgenubi 4, we live our life without numbers. I know, how do we pass our time if we can't construct a smartphone without numbers? The answer is that we have invented an extremely violent sport about chopping down trees called Hackenbush, and playing this game is an essential social skill in Zubenelgenubi 4. I will teach you how to play the pen and paper version of Hackenbush, and hint at how learning this game leads to a kind of math that is highly illegal in 254,233 planetary systems.