Gracious Living

November 2, 2010, 03:47
Filed under: Blog, Math | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

So it appears there’s this thing. It’s inspired by this other thing. As a wannabe NaNoWriMoer (I will have the time someday!), I do find the idea compelling: Siegel’s variation is to write a blog post of about 1000 words every day, on a single subject, ideally something the blogger knows little to nothing about.

So… I’ve been doing posts about every day, and they’ve been over a thousand words in general (going by the WordPress word count, which counts “words” in LaTeX formulas in some weird way). I don’t think this will be that difficult. On the other hand, I’ve been trying to teach math from the ground up, and since writing about a subject new to me will probably require more background than I’ve been assuming, I feel like it would be unfair to my readers, insofar as I hope to attract some.

The subjects I’d want to learn most of all in the context of a project like this are algebraic geometry (for which, small plug, Charles Siegel’s series looks excellent) or category theory (I’ve just gotten started on Mac Lane’s Categories). If I wanted to start from a high school background, however, my options are more limited: I feel like I could do some aspect of classical analysis, like Fourier analysis, maybe using Stein and Shakarchi’s Princeton Lectures vol. 1, which looks pretty neat. I’ve also just picked up a pretty simple-looking book on computability theory and logic from the co-op’s free pile, which isn’t my favorite subject, but what the hell. Finally, I got (from the same pile) a textbook on thermodynamics, which I know shamefully little about; it’s not really math, but I could give a more mathematical perspective, and it might be kind of fun.

The final option, which I’m leaning towards, is to continue laying the foundations of set theory and topology, but to do so every day. Maybe to work on conciseness and shoot at thousand-word rather than fifteen hundred-word posts. If anyone has any opinions or ideas, let me know!

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