Latest news from Plus magazine! - http://plus.maths.org In this newsletter: - Latest news - Browse with Plus - Mathematical moments - Live maths ********** Latest news from Plus And the Oscar goes to... - Mathematics takes out a technology Oscar. http://plus.maths.org/latestnews/jan-apr05/oscars/index.html Plus... more news from the world of maths - Physical fiction of fictional physics http://plus.maths.org/latestnews/jan-apr05/plusmore34/index.html#fiction ********** Browse with Plus Road sign math - If you have ever been bored on a long car trip this site is for you. There is not only glory at stake for submitting a new winning road sign, you will also earn a Road Sign Math T-shirt or bumper sticker, and new signs have been discovered every week since the site launched last month. Plus will be keeping our eyes peeled, and hope that a lucky Plus reader will find the next winning sign. And remember, in the words of the game's inventor: "driving + math = fun"! http://www.roadsidemath.com/ More mathematical games from Plus: http://plus.maths.org/issue27/features/dartnell/ http://plus.maths.org/issue20/features/conway/ http://plus.maths.org/issue15/features/doubling/ http://plus.maths.org/issue4/puzzle/doors.html ********** Mathematical moments Howard Aiken - Born 9 Mar 1900, died 14 Mar 1973, USA Howard Aiken was responsible for some of the very first computers, developing the Harvard Mark series first with IBM and then at Harvard. It was in the Harvard Mark II that fellow mathematician Grace Hopper found the first "computer bug" - actually a moth stuck in one of the relays. Aiken started this work as a way to handle the prohibitive amount of numerical calculations necessary to solve a set of differential equations that arose in his research, and he was very influenced by Babbage's work on the analytical engine in the 19th century. He is a pivotal figure in the history of computer science, even if he didn't realise the implications of the subject: "Only six electronic digital computers would be required to satisfy the computing needs of the entire United States." - Howard Aiken, 1947. Read more about Howard Aiken... from the Mactutor History of Mathematics site: http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Mathematicians/Aiken.html from the Harvard University Gazette: http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/1998/04.09/HowardAikenMaki.html and about the history of computers on Plus: http://plus.maths.org/indices/topic_urls.html#COMPUTER%20SCIENCE ********** Live maths Exploring Universes - Cosmologists talk about many possible models of the universe. Where do they come from? John Barrow looks at some of the possible universes that Einstein's theory of gravitation permits. Some expand, some rotate, some are smooth and some are lumpy, some go on forever while others come to a dramatic end; some even allow time travel. We will also see what type of universe best describes the one that we live in today. When: Tuesday 15th March 2005, 6.00 - 7.00 pm Where: Pippard Lecture Theatre, Cavendish Laboratory, Madingley Road, Cambridge This lecture is free, and there is no need to ring up about the lecture, just come along! Open Day at the CMS - As part of the Cambridge Science Festival (see http://www.cambridgescience.org/events/) the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics will be holding a public open day on Sat 19th March from 10am to 4pm at the Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Clarkson Road, Cambridge. The day is aimed at children from 8+, families and members of the general public, and will include hands-on experiments, demonstrations and displays on some of the areas mathematicians in Cambridge study, including fluid dynamics, quantum computation, particle physics, cosmology, the sun, the history of mathematics and quantum computation. There will also be a Hands-On Maths Fair from 10am-4pm for ages 5+, and talks on 'Mathematics Past, Present and Beyond' (11am), 'Cracking Enigma' (12 noon) and 'How to Hunt a Submarine' (2.30). For more details see http://www.mmp.maths.org/events/setweek.html Happy reading from the Plus team! ********** If you received this message you have subscribed yourself to the PLUS-ANNOUNCE mailing list via our website. If you do not wish to remain on the list please visit http://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/cgi-bin/wa.exe?SUBED1=plus-announce&A=1 and follow the instructions to leave the list. If you have any comments on this newsletter, or Plus Magazine, please contact us at [log in to unmask] - we are always happy to hear from our readers! Feel free to forward this email to anyone you think might be interested.