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Gary Gordon, professor of mathematics, will speak on “Gears that Turn and Archimedian Solids” for the first MAAD (Mathematical Adventures And Diversions) talk of the semester noon today in room 227 of Pardee Hall.

Sponsored by the mathematics department, the event includes free lunch.

“When my kids were little, we played with a popular game that involves setting up a system of gears,” says Gordon. “The gears, which come in three sizes, can be fastened to a plastic board and decorated with colorful animals and other adornments. It’s easy to set up an arrangement of gears that cannot turn. In this talk, I will describe how finding ‘nice’ arrangements of gears that turn leads to discovering some semi-regular solids in three dimensions that were originally discovered by Archimedes.”

MAAD is a series of talks on mathematical topics and applications that are often not encountered in mathematics courses. They are open to the Lafayette community and assume no special mathematical preparation on the part of the audience.

Categorized in: Academic News