Big Picture Science – Math’s Days are Numbered

by Gary Niederhoff on May 31, 2015

Big Picture Science – Math’s Days are Numbered

Imagine a world without algebra. We can hear the sound of school children applauding. What practical use are parametric equations and polynomials, anyway? Even some scholars argue that algebra is the Latin of today, and should be dropped from the mandatory curriculum.

But why stop there? Maybe we should do away with math classes altogether.

An astronomer says he’d be out of work: we can all forget about understanding the origins of the universe, the cycles of the moon and how to communicate with alien life. Also, no math = no cybersecurity + hackers (who have taken math) will have the upper hand.

Also, without mathematics, you’ll laugh < you do now. The Simpsons creator Matt Groening has peppered his animated show with hidden math jokes.

And why mathematics = love.

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Andrew Hacker / Math Requirements
Part 2: Bob Berman / Astronomical Math
Part 3: Simon Singh / Simpsons Math
Part 4: Rob Manning / NASA Math
Part 5: Edward Frenkel / Cybersecurity Math

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

avatar Steve Bergman February 25, 2016 at 2:08 am

As far as I can tell, Andrew Hacker is not a professor of political science and mathematics at Queen’s College. He is a professor emeritus (i.e. retired) of Queen’s College who used to teach political science. I’ve found no evidence that he’s ever taught math.

Engineers don’t use much math today? Really? The guy is insincere, a liar, and a nut.

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