(Editor's note: the original post and activity mistook Paleontology for Archaeology. Archaeology is the study of human made fossils; paleontology is the study of dinosaur remains. The terminology has since been corrected and updated. Thanks to the commenters for the newfound knowledge.) Here's an activity on systems of inequalities that teaches or reinforces the following concepts: … Continue reading Systems of Linear Inequalities: Paleontological Dig

## Where inquiry and methods intersect

Had a nice, quick twitter conversation with Anna (@borschtwithanna) yesterday morning. Anna reached out with a question about providing methods in an inquiry-based classroom. If you teach PBL or PrBL, do you teach students standard algorithms too? @emergentmath @SchettinoPBL @NatBanting — Anna Blinstein (@Borschtwithanna) October 23, 2014 Anna was conflicted due to her students' unwillingness … Continue reading Where inquiry and methods intersect

## Larry Ellison, billionaire CEO, makes unsound business decisions with regards to his basketball playing on his yacht.

Larry Ellison, co-founder and CEO of Oracle, has gobs and gobs of money. How much money? Well enough that he can do this. Boy that seems wasteful, doesn't it. I mean, when I'm playing basketball on my yacht and I lose a ball into the ocean I just purchase an extra basketball. Wouldn't it make … Continue reading Larry Ellison, billionaire CEO, makes unsound business decisions with regards to his basketball playing on his yacht.

## Evaluating energy efficiency claims

Artifact This (or other) energy efficient light bulb package(s). So many opportunities here, depending on how targeted you want to be. Or, if you prefer, what kind of problem you plan to facilitate. There's a clear nod to systems of linear equations (when one compares the time of payoff). There's also an opportunity for some … Continue reading Evaluating energy efficiency claims

## CNET has some TV viewing size/distance recommendations.

Feels like there's a similarity (and a lot of other stuff) type problem in here. Artifact From CNET: In a perfect videophile world, you'd want to sit no closer than 1.5 times the screen's diagonal measurement, and no farther than twice that measurement to the TV. For example, for a 50-inch TV, you'd sit between … Continue reading CNET has some TV viewing size/distance recommendations.

## Why doesn’t Nike+ use math to encourage me to run?

Artifact The Nike+ app, which at the end of my run the other day, looked like this: (editor's note: yes, I'm slow. Thank you for noticing. Also, along with some encouragement in data format, I had Tim Tebow give me words of encouragement for bettering my pace.) Now, there are a lot of numbers here, but … Continue reading Why doesn’t Nike+ use math to encourage me to run?

## Thought Experiment: I bet you could teach an entire math course with this one graph.

Or at least a huge chunk of an Algebra, Stats, and/or Pre-Cal course.

## Underground parking spots cost $30000-$50000 to build in D.C. This smells like a systems problem.

Artifact The Washington City Paper has a (rather lengthy) post on parking in D.C. Fair warning: it's pretty wonky with zoning rules, ordinances, etc. However, the numbers caught my eye: ... An underground parking spot costs between $30,000 and $50,000 to build, and residents pay for it one way or another. ... “Let’s say it’s … Continue reading Underground parking spots cost $30000-$50000 to build in D.C. This smells like a systems problem.

## “Equation Ratscrew”

I used to love "Egyptian Ratscrew" (also called "Egyptian Rat Slap" for the more easily offended I suppose). We used to play it all the time in my Physics/Calculus class. It combined the speed of "Speed" with the ferocity of "Spoons" without all the injuries. True, I'm guessing "Equation Ratscrew" won't engender quite the excitement … Continue reading “Equation Ratscrew”

## U-haul Linear Systems problem (updated and improved)

A couple weeks ago I posted this problem. I like the problem, but I wasn't a huge fan of its solution and frankly, it sort of got away from me. Thankfully, my colleagues are more adept than I am at developing clear problems. So here's the updated, improved version. =============================================== Moving On Up Artifact / Entry Event … Continue reading U-haul Linear Systems problem (updated and improved)