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Pat Ballew
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Fabian Franklin's Beautiful Proof of the Pentagonal Theorem
*Wik On Aug 16, 1878 Charles Hermite wrote to J J Sylvester at Johns Hopkins concerned about his accepting a Math Chair in America and questioning the ability of the American people to contribute to research-level mathematics. Only three years later he woul...
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A Problem About Elevens, and Some Methods of "Casting Out Sevens"
Expanding an Archive blog from 2008 with some new insights: Sometimes I enter the math contest they host at the Wild About Math blog site, and usually am among the people who get a correct answer, but haven't been the lucky name pulled from the hat yet. A ...
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A Problem About Elevens, and Some Methods of "Casting Out Sevens"
Expanding an Archive blog from 2008 with some new insights:  Sometimes I enter the math contest they host at the Wild About Math blog site, and usually am among the people who get a correct answer, but haven't been the lucky name pulled from the hat yet. A...
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On This Day in Math - August 11
Boy observing Mural along the flood wall in Paducah, Ky So far as the theories of mathematics are about reality, they are not certain; so far as they are certain, they are not about reality. ~Albert Einstein The 223rd day of the year; 223 is a prime number,...
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Not All Math Symbols are Equal, or How "=" Became Ubiquitous
Another from the Archives:2008 I have a friend named Dave Refro who writes and edits questions for one of those high stakes tests that is used for admission into certain graduate programs and uses his job as an excuse for his fascination with archiving old ...
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Easy!!! Computations on the Back of a Napkin.
Another from the Archives, Enjoy! Some calculations are easier than you think! I’m drawn to math that can be done on a napkin at a restaurant. Quick mental calculations and methods of approximation that give you the ball park quick answer…”It’s about …bla...
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An Application of the Am-Gm Inequality
From my archives back in 2008... I preceded this with an explanation of both means to lay a foundation for the students tying the algebraic and geometric relations together. The arithmetic mean-geometric mean (Am-Gm) inequality is equal in only one situatio...
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Alternating Sets against Two Better Opponents
From my 2008 archive, while writing to avoid grading finals. Many examples of this paradox involve duels and death, so I share this with a Tennis example, because I'm all about love.... (ALL my students would agree). Trying to avoid actually grading semest...
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Pick Two and Get One of Each?
Another from my archives: Nice for Alg II level or so, I think. A colleague from Colorado sent me an interesting probability problem the other day. I like it because it illustrates one of those serendipitous qualities of mathematics. Here is the problem. ...
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The Rule(s) of Three, Including the Probability of Nothing
A Re-edit and Posting of a 2008 Blog From 1827 Pike's Arithmetic In my youth, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, there was “the rule of three”… singular, one, and even then the name was often described as “archaic”. More modern books tended to develop “...
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