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# Math Jokes: Courtesy of the mainstream media

As funny as this image from a Facebook post is, the comments were even more hilarious!  Here are just a few of them:

I guess i'm moving to Kentucky then...

is it really if so i would so move there

Math is a gateway drug. It leads to Science and Critical Thinking.

tongue emoticon

Well, if it is common core math...I don't blame them!

They need to get this under control before it escalates and the problem multiplies!

I just finished doing some math. Should I turn myself in?

This is your brain on MATH..... ANY QUESTIONS?????

Somehow it just doesn't ADD UP

I hate those lawless common denominators!

They went on to bust a spelling bee!

Must have been a common core math lab.......

Comments such as the above, are why I tell my MathQED team not to take it personally that we are having an uphill struggle getting kids excited about math and math applications in their everyday lives. As funny as these comments are, they illustrate the deep-seated disgust and fear of mathematics in the U.S.

However, on a brighter note, we are in discussions with a few foundations, and techies from Silicon Valley who know there is a serious math problem in this country and want to join forces to do something about it before it's too late!

# Trick or Treat: 5+5+5=15 is wrong according to Common Core

Parents are venting their outrage at the Common Core school standards over a math quiz that was posted online, showing how teachers are marking students down even for correct answers.

The quiz, posted to Reddit, shows how a teacher marked two questions as incorrect on a third-grader's math quiz, despite the student finding the solution to the problem.

Apparently, the reason for the deduction had to do with the petty fact of exactly how the student found the answer.

The assignment’s second question, which similarly asks the student to use “repeated addition” to solve 4×6, is also marked wrong despite being correct.
The assignment’s second question, which similarly asks the student to use “repeated addition” to solve 4×6, is also marked wrong despite being correct.
The assignment’s second question, which similarly asks the student to use “repeated addition” to solve 4×6, is also marked wrong despite being correct.

# U.S. Common Core Math: How "Addition" is Taught in 46 States

I ran into a young mother this weekend who is literally pulling her hair out over the U.S. Common Core math standards.  To help me better understand her dilemma, she suggested I take a look at the video clip above.  It illustrates how Common Core "addition" is currently taught in 46 states.

# Reuters: MathQED (website dedicated to helping students with math)

We're very happy to learn that hundreds of news outlets picked up our story about MathQED: Reuters, Yahoo Finance, MarketWatch, Platts,.... This media attention is very much appreciated and needed to combat innumeracy - the mathematical equivalent of illiteracy!

# U.S.A. Wins Mathematics Olympiad For First Time In 21 Years!!!

Head coach Po-Shen Loh (far left) and assistant coaches John Berman

and Alex Zhai (far right) flank the members of the winning squad:

Shyam Narayanan, David Stoner, Michael Kural, Ryan Alweiss,

Yang Liu and Allen Liu.

Courtesy of Po-Shen Loh

(NPR) In one of this year's most intense international competitions, the United States has come out as best in the world — and this time, we're not talking about soccer.

This week, the top-ranked math students from high schools around the country went head-to-head with competitors from more than 100 countries at the International Mathematical Olympiad in Chiang Mai, Thailand. And, for the first time in more than two decades, they won!

What a great achievement.  Kudos to these young mathematicians!

# John Urschel: NFL Pro Footballer & Math Scholar

John Urschel, an offensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens, recently co-authored a paper in the Journal of Computational Mathematics.  It is titled "A Cascadic Multigrid Algorithm for Computing the Fiedler Vector of Graph Laplacians".

# Stanford Professor Maryam Mirzakhani: First Woman to Win the "Nobel Prize" of Mathematics

For the first time in history, a woman has received the highest honor in mathematics, often nicknamed the Nobel Prize of mathematics.

Since it was established in 1936, the Fields Medal had gone only to men, until Wednesday, when Maryam Mirzakhani received it in Seoul, South Korea, from the International Mathematical Union.

"This is a great honor. I will be happy if it encourages young female scientists and mathematicians," Mirzakhani said, according to a statement from Stanford University, where she is a professor.

# Wall Street Journal: Companies Struggle to Find Workers in U.S. Who Can Do Basic Math

Bringing Jobs Back to U.S. Is Bruising Task

By TIMOTHY AEPPEL

Stanley Furniture factory is in the process of shutting down and shedding workers.

Some small and midsize companies that brought manufacturing back to the U.S. in recent years have found it a bumpy road.

Shortages of skilled workers are a common problem, as are difficulties navigating complex regulatory systems that govern modern American manufacturing.

But there are other challenges as well.

Crib maker Stanley Furniture Co. STLY +2.61% misjudged the willingness of Americans to pay more for domestically produced goods when cheaper imports are available, for example. Meanwhile, the husband-and-wife entrepreneurs who founded 20-year-old Chesapeake Bay Candle have struggled to find workers who can do basic math.

# Sailing

Two reminders of this song in one day - while jogging on the sand in Miami Beach and reading a friend's facebook post.  It also reminds me of my first year as a grad student at Harvard. Back then I was studying Applied Math/Geophysical Fluid Dynamics because my thesis advisor would only work with students who essentially had 3 concentrations - math theory, numerical analysis and a real world application.

So, my advisor had this brilliant idea of having me spend a summer on a Woodshole Oceanographic research vessel. After a few months in the middle of the Atlantic ocean - collecting water samples and temperature data - I decided I was not cut out to be an oceanographer. So when I returned to Harvard for the fall semester of my second year in grad school I decided to switch to Applied Math/Energy.

# Jason Padgett: The Brain Injury That Made Me A Math Genius

If you could see the world through my eyes, you would know how perfect it is, how much order runs through it, and how much structure is hidden in its tiniest parts. We’re so often victims of things—I see the violence too, the disease, the poverty stretching far and wide—but the universe itself and everything we can touch and all that we are is made of the most beautiful geometric patterns imaginable. I know because they’re right in front of me. Because of a traumatic brain injury, the result of a brutal physical attack, I’ve been able to see these patterns for over a decade. This change in my perception was really a change in my brain function, the result of the injury and the extraordinary and mostly positive way my brain healed. All of a sudden, the patterns were just . . . there, and I realize now that my injury was a rare gift. I’m lucky to have survived, but for me, the real miracle—what really saved me—was being introduced to and almost overwhelmed by the mathematical grace of the universe.

* * *

There’s a park in my town of Tacoma, Washington, that I like to walk through in the mornings before work. I see the trees that line its path as anyone would, the branches and the bark, but I see a geometrical blueprint laid on top of them too. I see triangular patterns emerging from the leaves, reminding me of the Pythagorean theorem, as if it’s unfolding in the air, proving to me over and over again what the ancient Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras deduced thousands of years ago: the sum of the squares of the legs of a right triangle (a triangle in which one angle is a right angle, or 90 degrees) equals the square of its hypotenuse. I don’t need a calculator to know that the simple formula most of us learned in school—a2 + b2 = c2—is true; I can see it instantly in the trees all around me. To me, a tree is more than its geometry, but geometry is also far more than most people realize. I think it’s everything.

I remember reading that Galileo Galilei, the Italian astronomer, mathematician, and physicist (and one of my heroes), said that we cannot understand the universe until we have learned its language. Speaking of the universe, he said, “It is written in the language of mathematics, and its characters are triangles, circles, and other geometric figures, without which it is humanly impossible to understand a single word of it.”

This rings true for me. I see this hidden language of the world before my eyes.