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Third Christopher Zeeman Medal to go to Marcus du Sautoy

The Christopher Zeeman Medal for the Promotion of Mathematics to the Public for 2014 has been awarded to Professor Marcus du Sautoy of the University of Oxford.

IMA 50th Anniversary events


The IMA turns 50 this year, and is holding two celebration events and publishing a book.

App review: Incredible Numbers, by Ian Stewart

Mathematician and author Professor Ian Stewart, helped by Touch Press and his publisher Profile Books, has recently released a new app for iOS (suitable for use on an iPad) called Incredible Numbers. We saw this tweet:

and how could we resist? We borrowed a nearby iPad, downloaded the app and had a play.

Ian Stewart on The Life Scientific

Acknowledging the long-hidden truth that mathematicians are also scientists, Jim al-Khalili interviewed Ian Stewart yesterday for his Radio 4 programme, The Life Scientific. The show features a different scientist in each episode, and Professor al-Khalili talks to them about their life and work, what inspires and motivates them, and how their research may benefit mankind.

Professor Ian Stewart (not to be confused with geologist Professor Iain Stewart) is a professor at Warwick University, and is involved with a lot of maths outreach, including having written numerous popular maths books; he gave the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures in 1997. His research interests are in dynamical systems, bifurcations, pattern theory and biomathematics.  He also writes science fiction books, and has collaborated on the Science of Discworld books, based on Terry Pratchett’s series.


Listen again to the episode of The Life Scientific, originally broadcast 17/9/13 – available up to a week afterwards.

Podcast – available indefinitely.

Not mentioned recently on The Aperiodical

Summer is a busy time for this site’s hard-working triumvirate, so we haven’t been keeping on top of the news as much as we’d like. There’s been some quite interesting news, so here’s a quick round-up of the most important bits:

Save the Ri

It’s been in the news this week that the Royal Institution is having financial trouble, and is considering selling its London headquarters at Albemarle Street. The organisation has done a great deal for the popularisation of mathematics over the years, from including mathematics in its series of annual Christmas Lectures (delivered by Christopher Zeeman in 1978, by Ian Stewart in 1997 and Marcus Du Sautoy in 2006) as well as running an excellent series of mathematics and engineering masterclasses for primary and secondary schools, since 1981. They also have a dedicated maths team, who post maths resources on the Ri website.

Professor Sir Harry Kroto, a Nobel laureate in chemistry, has started a blog called “Save the Ri” and posted a highly outraged open letter calling on interested parties to “make it clear to the Government and others in positions of responsibility that we are outraged by the decision to put the premises up for sale”. He’s also posted a statement outlining the situation, and indicating his support of the ‘Save 21 Albemarle Street’ campaign, on Facebook and Twitter.

UPDATE: MP Valerie Vaz has tabled an Early Day Motion in Parliament about this, although it currently only has 9 signatures. There’s also an e-petition, calling for the government to purchase the building and let the Ri stay there permanently.