Monday, 23 February 2009


An exciting evening for MathSoc with Peter Rowlett leading a session on exploring Newtonian dynamics with a Wii. Peter explained the mechanics behind pool and then had us playing the game to see how it works in practice. We then moved onto doubles matches in tennis, with perhaps slightly less maths in evidence, but I'm proud of saving three match points against Justin.

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Royal Institution Masterclasses

We're running our annual series of sixth-form Royal Institution masterclasses once again. We've had two so far - Chris Walshaw on how abstract algebra made the founders of Google very rich, and Graham Hoare on the joys of number theory. I am amazed yet again at the enthusiasm of the students who participate. Having people arrive an hour early for a Saturday morning maths lecture is rather remarkable (and rather different from my own early-morning lectures where students tend to stumble in sleepily after I've started). But each year I'm also impressed by our undergraduate helpers who always manage to be enthusiastic, welcoming, willing to do whatever may be required, and totally reliable. All of the speakers really enjoy doing these classes, and that's a wonderful reflection on the Greenwich students who help and the sixth-formers from all over London who attend.