Monday, August 4, 2008

A brief math lesson (with knitting content)

****I promise none of the math in this post is scary.  If you have an aversion to math it is okay please keep reading.  No one will get hurt by reading the mathematics that follows...plus you want to see the knitting!****

So I was asked to give a "fun" math talk (20 minutes) to incoming graduate students in a couple of weeks.  So what did I choose?  Geometry of course!  I really like geometry (especially non-Euclidean geometry....not what you learn in high school)  I have found that most grad students have seen very little of this and it is extremely useful (at least in what I do).  

One fun hyperbolic geometry fact:   Triangles must have angle sum (add up the degrees of all three angles) less than 180!  Yes there are geometries where angle sums are more than 180 too! 

So to the knitting.  I thought it would be a shame to give such a talk and not have a nice model of hyperbolic space.  I made a knitted version, but here is also a crocheted version.  (They often look like lettuce because they curve a lot as you go out further)

I made a Pseudosphere (in LSU colors of course) pattern here.  I added a single crocheted border to help the added curling and give it some purple!   I think it will be the perfect model to make my talk more fun!

Not too scary right? :)

10 comments:

Stacy said...

Thank you for not making me... gasp... multiple.

Great way to give an example. The visual learner in me loves it!

Lovs2Knit said...

lol....not scary at all. I enjoyed algebra in HS and college but anything above that is scary hard for me. :) I'm a whiz at English though.

MicheleLB said...

Tres cool! I gave up on "normal" math when I hit calculus in HS, but in college I took a math class of non-traditional math subjects, and loved it. We did do some non-Euclidean geometry. Neat!

Awesome Mom said...

It was horrifying! My brain has shut down with all the math talk. Just kidding!

Aunt Kathy said...

OK math doesn't scare me... but I've never heard of non-Euclidean geometry

I thought you were making magician hats LOL

Davene McBride said...

You are a hoot, daughter! All of us visual learners thank you. Love you!
Mom

Robin said...

Wish I'd had you as my math teacher!!!

Susan said...

Leah, that looks great! When's your talk? I'd love to take an algebra study break and come see it!

Wool Winder said...

Neat that you are able to knit up a model for your talk.

Jennifer said...

Your lecture will go well. I can feel it. Anyone who can add fun or humor into teaching always succeeds. I love it!