September 19, 2013

Keith Devlin

The Joy of Math: Learning and What It Means To Be Human

Mathematical equations are like sonnets says Keith Devlin. What most of us learn in school, he says, doesn’t begin to convey what mathematics is. And technology may free more of us to discover the wonder of mathematical thinking — as a reflection of the inner world of our minds.

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*Introduction to Mathematical Thinking*and *Life by the Numbers*.

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**Author:**Keith Devlin

**Publisher:**Keith Devlin

**Binding:**Paperback, (102)Pages

**Author:**Keith Devlin

**Publisher:**Holt Paperbacks

**Binding:**Paperback, (352)Pages

**Author:**Keith Devlin

**Publisher:**Basic Books

**Binding:**Paperback, (352)Pages

**Author:**Keith Devlin

**Publisher:**Wiley

**Binding:**Paperback, (320)Pages

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September 19, 2013KRISTA TIPPETT, HOST:Keith Devlin sees mathematical equations like sonnets. They are reflections, he says, of the inner worlds of our minds. But what most of learn in school doesn’t begin to convey this. And that’s not just because some of us — like me — seem congenitally bad at math. Our brains are not primarily logical, but analogical. And what we’ve asked everyday math to do up to now can be better done by computers.Keith Devlin is also a leader on the frontier of MOOCs, massively open online courses. And he believes that on-line teaching is helping us finally learn how we learn. To be with this mathematician is to glimpse the beauty of “mathematical thinking” – illuminating what it means to be human in unexpected ways.MS. TIPPETT:I’m Krista Tippett, and this isOn Being.[Announcements]MS. TIPPETT:Keith Devlin co-founded and directs H-STAR at Stanford University, the Human-Sciences and Technologies Advanced Research Institute. He’s also a senior researcher at Stanford’s Center for the Study of Language and Information. He grew up in England, in Kingston upon Hull.[music][music]MS. TIPPETT:I’m Krista Tippett and this isOn Being. Today with mathematician Keith Devlin.[music: “Euler’s Identity”[music: “Euler’s Identity”][music: “Euler’s Identity”][music: “Euler’s Identity”][music: “Pythagoras’ Theorem”][music: “Pythagoras’ Theorem”]MS. TIPPETT:You can listen again or share this show with Keith Devlin at onbeing.org. There we also have links to more of his favorite equations set to music with the choral group Zambra. There are musical odes to Leibniz’s series for pi and Einstein’s energy equation.[music: “Pythagoras’ Theorem”]MS. TIPPETT:Coming up…how teaching thousands of students online can be more intimate than a classroom.I’m Krista Tippett.On Beingcontinues in a moment.[Announcements]MS. TIPPETT:I’m Krista Tippett and this isOn Being. Today: with mathematician Keith Devlin. We’ve been exploring his view that what most of us learned as math in school doesn’t convey the beauty and purpose of this endeavor. We’re catching some of his delight in mathematical thinking – as something that reflects the inner world of the human mind and can help us navigate the outer world in unexpected ways. Keith Devlin leads Stanford University’s H-STAR: the Human-Sciences and Technologies Advanced Research Institute.MS. TIPPETT:I’m Krista Tippett withOn Being. Today with Stanford mathematician Keith Devlin. Stanford has been a pioneer of MOOCS, Massively Open free Online Courses. And Keith Devlin has been one of the first professors to join in, offering “Introduction to Mathematical Thinking” to thousands of students at a time, all over the world.[music][music]MS. TIPPETT:Keith Devlin is executive director of H-STAR, the Human-Sciences and Technologies Advanced Research Institute at Stanford University. His books includeIntroduction to Mathematical ThinkingandLife by the Numbers.To listen again, share this show, or subscribe to our podcast go to our website at onbeing.org. On Facebook, we’re at facebook.com/onbeing. On Twitter, you can follow our show @beingtweets. I share my thoughts @Krista Tippett.On Beingis produced on-air and online by Chris Heagle, Lily Percy, and Stefni Bell.Trent Gilliss is our senior editor.