Month: September 2011

Still not buying a Kindle
Amazon have a new version of the Kindle. I still have no plans to buy one.

The second law of thermodynamics and the history of the universe
I had to go on quite a long plane journey yesterday and I bought a book to read – Roger Penrose‘s work on cosmology: Cycles of Time: An Extraordinary New View of the Universe I bought it on spec – it was on the popular science shelves: somewhere I usually avoid at least for the […]

The future of Britain’s coalition government depends on “agile” methods
I don’t write about politics here, much, but I am not going to shock anyone who knows me if I admit to not being a supporter of the current Conservative – Lib Dem coalition government. But I will give them credit for some of the things they have said and done on software use and […]

Copyright in students’ work
Slashdot has an interesting discussion on copyright in students’ work. I raised this issue with faculty staff in Birkbeck a year ago and got a very vague answer – which sounded pretty much like “the university has copyright in your work but we won’t enforce it.” I honesty do not know whether that is true […]

If it wasn’t for those pesky neutrinos
Neutrinos have proved to be nothing but trouble for scientists over the years. They could not detect them from the Sun (where they are produced as a byproduct of fusion), then they did or did not have mass. Now, it seems, they travel faster than light and are threatening to overturn the apple cart of […]

More on the Erdős–Straus conjecture
As a reminder, the Erdős–Straus conjecture is: . Let , we can see if is even, then and so the conjecture holds for all even . In fact this holds for also. For odds it’s not so simple, though an expansion does exist for the odd numbers of the form Related articles I bought […]

The Erdős–Straus conjecture
I came across this as a result of links to stories about Hilbert’s tenth problem, and it looks fun, so I thought I’d write a little about it. The Erdős–Straus conjecture is that for any integer then where , , and are positive integers. This is equivalent to a diophantine equation: Which is, apparently, trivially […]

I bought a book
“Programming Android: Java Programming for the New Generation of Mobile Devices” to be precise. Now I just have to decide what I want to do with it! I had thought about a LaTeX based application, as both LaTeX and LyX are thinly supported on Android. But that looks very ambitious at the moment. We’ll see. […]

More on Hilbert’s tenth problem
One of the best things about WordPress.com is that it gives me, as a blog author, the opportunity to link in other relevant stories and so it was with my last post on diaphantine sets and the integers. The top linked item there gives a lot more on David Hilbert‘s “tenth problem” – which was […]

Diophantine sets and the integers
This is not some great revelation, but it interested me, so might interest some readers (I got it from The Honors Class: Hilbert’s Problems and Their Solvers). A diophantine equation is one of the form and a diophantine set is a set of numbers to solve a diophantine equation (Hilbert’s 10th problem was to find […]