Archive for the ‘wp fail’ Category

wp fail



i mean it this time.

how about now

trying one more time.

uh-oh. carriage-return has been given a weird function.

*now* what? i clicked a +-sign button &c. supposedly

something about a block. nothing happened. trying again.


okay. putting in a graphics block works like that.

this is allegedly "preformatted".  which, 
okay, at least doesn't punish you with the
carriage-return-line-feed misfeature, but,
still, won't even let me write "preformatted"
without touching the mouse to tell the damn
thing i actually mean what i actually type.
over and over.  and this is a word i *copied*
from *this ghastly format itself*, which 
would make it even funnier if it were funny
at all instead of inspiring of rage & despair.

another block now. okay. maybe i’ll be back.

Photo on 11-17-15 at 10.46 AM

saturday night i colored in the corners of this cube.
the underlying black-and-white is based on a work of
the great dutch artist m.~c.~escher. the cardboard
cut-out version is from a collection by the american
mathematician doris schattschneider.

anyhow, i’ve had the whole “5 platonic solids” set
from this work on display in the front room at home
for a while. the others are in color already, right
out of the book. i’ve had *another* set of these,
too: it’s a great “book” and might still be in print
for all i know. i had two editions, from years apart,
years ago.

i took this one to church on sunday and used it in my talk.
there wasn’t time to explain why i’d colored it the way i
did. but i *did* count the symmetry group of the cube,
two ways. any talk by me should have a theorem in it;
i’m happy to count that as a theorem.

24 because any of the 6 faces can be “face down”,
and each such choice-of-face allows for any of 4
remaining faces then to “face front” (all but the
“face-up” one *opposite* to our “chosen” face).

but also 24 because
1 identity
6 180-degree “flips” that fix two edges
(one for each pair of opposite edges)
8 120-degree “corner-turns”
(fix a pair of opposite corners;
there are 4 such; one may “turn”
right or left)
6 90-degree “face turns”
(fix opposite faces—3 ways; again,
one can go “right” or “left”)
3 180-degree face turns.

and this messy version is actually quite clear when
one is actually holding up an actual cube and pointing
at the drawing on the board. or in this case, at one’s
own sweatshirt. canvas makes a good whiteboard.

you can do it all without even mentioning “group theory”…
and i *sure* didn’t get to prove that this set of 24
“moves” gives a version of “the symmetric group on 4
objects”. anyway, part of the point is that one need
not have introduced any “math code” into the discussion
at all to arrive some some *very* useful results.

i learned the symmetry-groups-of-solids trick from an
old master
. i mentioned this book in the service.

but mostly i talked about stuff like bible studies and music.

stuff that people actually show up at church *for*. bring what
you love to church and share it. food and money are particularly

blog broken

my sidebars appear at the bottom of the page
under the posts. i’ve seen this before and been
able to tweak the code until it looked right.
to me. how it looked to other people?
none of my business evidently. anyhow,
after laying off for a long time and
flirting with coming back, a sign that
this *isn’t* (at *all*) how i want to
spend my time. it sure was fun when it
was easy.

so somebody comment already

comment thread reprint

i signed on as a math teacher and became
however good i am at it now over the course
of a longer period than i like to think about.
meanwhile, a lot of math departments have committed
(e.g.) to require students to buy “graphing calculators”.
the curriculum is adjusted accordingly.
this not only does nothing to make my job easier,
it takes time (and student interest) *away*
from what is necessarily a very limited budget
to begin with. so too with, as far as i can see,
pretty much any other computer application.

not only do i not *want* to help the profiteers
that have hijacked the academy to sell their products,
i’m not even *qualified* to do so since i can
never get the doggone things to work in the first place.
what i *can* do, and still very often get a chance to do,
is get students to understand more mathematics by talking
with them about mathematics. not something our
society values a whole lot, i’ll admit, but still:
the product that the college actually goes out and sells.
switching in some bloody demos,
no matter how well-prepared,
is bait-and-switch and i resent it.

i’m never going to be much interested in selling.
speech & presence & suchlike variables …
heck yes. i’ve put in a lot of time working on ‘em
and hope to continue to improve my skills
over the whole rest of my working life.
bring a computer into the deal, though,
and you’ve *changed the subject*.
part of the gospel i preach is:
*you* can do this … with paper and pencil.

me, in dan meyer’s “what we did last time”
august 22, 07; comment 10 (but start at 8).