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Maths at the Manchester Science Festival

Manchester Science Festival takes over the city from 23rd October – 2nd November this year, and it’s got a great selection of mathematical events. If you’re based locally, or thinking of heading over there for any of the time, here’s The Aperiodical’s guide to where to get your factorial fix.

Dice World (Thursday 23rd October, 6-8pm, John Rylands Library, Deansgate)

While the festival brochure isn’t too specific about who’s speaking, this event is part of their ‘Conversations’ strand of researcher-led events, and promises to explain chaos, uncertainty, randomness and predictions.

Science Showoff (Friday 24th October, 7.30pm-10pm, MOSI)

Chaotic science cabaret – an open mic night for science, featuring speakers from a range of disciplines – including our own mathematician Katie Steckles (that’s me).

Alan Turing – Tortured Genius of the Computer Age (Saturday 25th October, 11am, meet at Manchester Museum reception desk)

What Manchester-based mathematical walking tour programme would be complete without a random walk around ‘Turing’s Manchester’. Go to the places! In real life!

MegaMenger (Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th October, MOSI, 10am-5pm)

Following on from the success of Matt Parker’s Domino Computer in 2012, the MSF have invited him back to do something even more stupid and ambitious. Using over a million business cards in 20 locations around the world, Matt and a team of enthusiastic mathematicians will be building a giant fractal Menger Sponge, spanning the whole globe. Join in with the fun by turning up on the day, or visit to find out how to get involved.

Prelude to a Number (Monday 27th October, 8.30pm, Z-Arts)

This musical performance piece by theatre company Geddes Loom is about humans, maths and meaning with live-looped music, spoken word and storytelling. It’s been developed in collaboration with mathematicians including our own Katie Steckles (again me, sorry).

What’s Your Favourite Number? with Alex Bellos (Tuesday 28th October, 6.30pm-7.30pm, International Anthony Burgess Foundation)

Alex Bellos, bestselling author of Alex Through the Looking-Glass and Alex’s Adventures in Numberland, dives into fractals, cones and curves to navigate a sea of numbers. Learn about the people he’s met on his mathematical book-writing journey, and find out the results of his Favourite Number survey.

MathsJam Night (Tuesday 28th October, 7pm onwards, SandBar)

The classic pub/maths combo strikes again, with this special Manchester Science Festival edition promising more pub, more maths and more celebrity guests (last year Marcus Du Sautoy popped in for a visit, as did Matt Parker and Colin Wright). Who knows who’ll turn up this time?!

More information

Manchester Science Festival website

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