A couple of weekends ago was the big MathsJam gathering (I might call it a recreational maths conference, but this is discouraged). Two of the delightful sideshows, alongside an excellent series of talks, were the competitions. The Baking Competition is fairly straightforward, with prizes for “best flavour, best presentation, and best maths”:
The first will reward a well-made, delicious item; the second will reward the item which has been decorated the most beautifully and looks most like what it’s supposed to be; and the third will reward the most ingenious mathematical theming.
You can view the entries from this year on the MathsJam website.
The Royal Statistical Society is seeking nominations for the best statistic of 2017 – they’re looking for the “statistics that you think really capture the year so far”. The nomination form (docx) can be downloaded from their website, and their criteria include that it should be accurate, coherent and not misleading, and that it should have a public interest dimension (but it doesn’t need to have already had media attention).
The judging panel is chaired by Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter and includes journalists, statisticians, economists and pollsters. The winning statistic will be unveiled in December.
Stat of the Year, on the RSS Website
Registration for the 2017 Alan Turing Cryptography Competition is now open!
Before Christmas, we launched a winter-themed maths competition – to design a sensible hexagonal snowflake, using a square grid, which could be used to knit a wintery jumper and not a) look terrible or b) have non-hexagonal symmetry. We had a deluge of entries, some valid and others less so – in fact, we may have had at least one entry break each of the rules we set. Below is a round-up of all the entries we received.
COMPETITION DEADLINE EXTENDED – SEE BELOW!
To celebrate the year end, as well as our daily Advent Calendar posts, we’re also running a little competition – last year we did a pun competition, and this year it’s something a bit more crafty – well, it’s a knitting competition in which the knitting is optional.
Here’s one of my favourite maths puns.
What’s yellow and equivalent to the axiom of choice?
I like it because it’s a real groaner, but to even begin to see what it’s punning on you have to know some pretty obscure facts about set theory. That makes it an ideal maths pun.
Maths puns abound (both upper and lower). Most of the time they make your eyes roll so badly that gimbal lock becomes a consideration, but a real corker makes all the years of mathematical study worthwhile.
Since the year is about to end, we thought it’d be a fun idea to collect some new maths puns, and run a quick competition to find 2014’s best offering (or the local maxipun at 2014, as we like to call it).
Top chap (and newest Aperiodipal?) Neil Sloane, founder of the Online Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences, wrote in to direct our attention towards a “best new integer sequence” contest being run on the sequence-fans mailing list.
Any sequence submitted between the middle of December and the middle of January is eligible. The winners (of which there will be at least three) will each receive a signed copy of the original 1973 Handbook of Integer Sequences, as well as the highly coveted “nice” keyword on their encyclopedia entries.