There is maths in everything, says visiting professor
In today’s Higher Ed Daily Brief: message for mathematicians
Don’t be afraid
US mathematician Julie Rowlett is the star attraction at the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute winter school, which is on this month at the distinctly warm climate of the University of Queensland’s Brisbane campus.
Professor Rowlett — whose interests also encompass languages, the Korean martial art of Tang Soo Do, scuba diving, making and listening to music, dancing and cooking — is giving five lectures at the school to post graduate students and early career researchers from around Australia.
Her message? “Don’t ever be afraid of mathematics! Even the “mathematics professionals’’ get stuck, make silly mistakes, and need to ask for explanations of things we have trouble understanding. There is mathematics in basically everything, even if we don’t understand it all yet.”
For her the “everything” includes cooking (how and why does a square pan cook differently to a round pan?) and plankton (can we describe mathematically how they swim and compete for food?)”
Professor Rowlett, who has an appointment at Sweden’s Chalmers Institute of Technology in Gothenburg, is giving a public lecture this evening (July 9) at 6.30pm at the Abel Smith lecture theatre on the University of Queensland’s St Lucia campus.
Original article appeared in The Australian newspaper on 9 July 2018. Author: Tim Dodd