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Včera vo veku 40 rokov na rakovinu zomrela Maryam Mirzakhani, matematička iránskeho pôvodu, jediná žena, ktorá dostala Fieldsovu medailu (keď sa dávali naposledy, v roku 2014). Mala českého manžela a malú dcéru.

To her dismay, Mirzakhani did poorly in her mathematics class that year. Her math teacher didn’t think she was particularly talented, which undermined her confidence. At that age, “it’s so important what others see in you,” Mirzakhani said. “I lost my interest in math.” The following year, Mirzakhani had a more encouraging teacher, however, and her performance improved enormously. “Starting from the second year, she was a star,” Beheshti said.

A Path Less Taken to the Peak of the Math World

When you teach, you do something useful. When you do research, most days you don’t.

That Huh would achieve this status after starting mathematics so late is almost as improbable as if he had picked up a tennis racket at 18 and won Wimbledon at 20. It’s the kind of out-of-nowhere journey that simply doesn’t happen in mathematics today, where it usually takes years of specialized training even to be in a position to make new discoveries. Yet it would be a mistake to see Huh’s breakthroughs as having come in spite of his unorthodox beginning. In many ways they’re a product of his unique history — a direct result of his chance encounter, in his last year of college, with a legendary mathematician who somehow recognized a gift in Huh that Huh had never perceived himself.

Teaching to fail – vďaka Ondrovi za linku

The most common errors in undergraduate mathematics – aj táto je dobrá a tiež Ondrova

You Don’t Need Blue Apron to Teach You to Turn On Your Oven

Whenever I write a recipe for a magazine or newspaper my editors demand more measurements and cooking times. This phony precision undermines the heart, and joy, of cooking. Chefs sample their dishes multiple times as they cook because cooking happens by taste and by eye, not by time and temperature. Baking is the fussy one where you need measurements, while cooking is for slobs like me.

Does that look like enough pasta? Does this taste as salty as you like? That sauce looks thin — let’s throw in some more tomatoes. People become dependent on cooking times and temperatures because they don’t understand how cooking works, they know only how to follow a recipe.

Datascapes – atlas for the end of the world; somewhat related: Summary of Solutions by Overall Rank

The tragedy of men

The biggest problem with masculinity, Perry proffers, is that it’s based on a model that’s several thousands of years old, when survival depended on physical strength and male power. Or, as he puts it, “masculinity is to chase things and fight things and to fuck. Everything else is a bit of a mismatch.” This framework for men has remained remarkably persistent even as society has evolved past it, with modern jobs and relationships requiring a very different set of skills. Feminism, Perry observes, is forward-thinking, wondering how women can change themselves and their lives for the better. But masculinity is regressive, always “harking back to some mythical golden age (for men), when men were ‘men.’” The easiest thing in the world to sell to men who feel disenfranchised from modern life, he says, is nostalgia—a promise that the world can change to fit them rather than the other way around. That men can be great again.

s kým trávime čas – trochu smutné grafy; zaujímavé by bolo pozrieť, či/ako sa slovenské podobajú na tie americké

meet Ruby and her friends

Snow leopard

About me: I’m the most beautiful, polite and well-mannered Snow leopard I know. I often have fights with the robots. (Which is kind of pointless, since we are similar in the end.) 
Birthday: June 8th
Interests: Solitude, Zen, and pirates
Pet peeve: People think I’m tough, but I’m really cuddly. 
Favorite expression: Think different
Secret superpower: Boundless beauty

Mladá osobnosť vedy Tomáš Bertók: Ľuďom chýba súdnosť a kritické myslenie

what bullets do to bodies

Early in my medical training, I learned that it is not the bullet that kills you, but the path the bullet takes. A non-expanding (or full-metal-jacket) bullet often enters the body in a straight line. Like a knife, it damages the organs and tissues directly in its path, and then it either exits the body or, if it is traveling at a slower velocity, is stopped by bone, tissue or skin.

This is in contrast to expanding bullets, especially if shot from an assault rifle, which can discharge bullets much faster than a handgun. Once they enter the body, they fragment and explode, pulverizing bones, tearing blood vessels and liquefying organs…

Two years ago, a group of doctors wrote in the Annals of Internal Medicine: “It does not matter whether we believe that guns kill people or that people kill people with guns — the result is the same: a public health crisis.” In the war zone of the E.R., we don’t see partisanship or politics. We see the devastation that happens when our society normalizes tools of total bodily destruction.

este raz (dlhšie a ťažké čítanie)… a tu je to celé v dvoch vetách

She started talking about the 2012 murder of 20 schoolchildren and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Goldberg said that if people had been shown the autopsy photos of the kids, the gun debate would have been transformed. “The fact that not a single one of those kids was able to be transported to a hospital, tells me that they were not just dead, but really really really really dead.

akčné fotky a fotky spod mikroskopu

Zen of Python

Trávim teraz v práci dosť času s hadom a natrafila som na toto:

Beautiful is better than ugly.
Explicit is better than implicit.
Simple is better than complex.
Complex is better than complicated.
Flat is better than nested.
Sparse is better than dense.
Readability counts.
Special cases aren’t special enough to break the rules.
Although practicality beats purity.
Errors should never pass silently.
Unless explicitly silenced.
In the face of ambiguity, refuse the temptation to guess.
There should be one – and preferably only one – obvious way to do it.
Although that way may not be obvious at first unless you’re Dutch.
Now is better than never.
Although never is often better than right now.
If the implementation is hard to explain, it’s a bad idea.
If the implementation is easy to explain, it may be a good idea.
Namespaces are one honking great idea – let’s do more of those!

Takmer poézia… pekné, poučné a myslím, že by sme si to mali v rámci našej skupiny v tomto období čítať pravidelne. 

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Melinda Gates: Current data is sexist and To close the gender gap, we have to close the data gap first

write less code

but the best code is no code at all. Every new line of code you willingly bring into the world is code that has to be debugged, code that has to be read and understood, code that has to be supported… If you love writing code– really, truly love to write code– you’ll love it enough to write as little of it as possible.

Incredible “Day to Night” Photography

Svalbard global seed vault – Sýria si už nejaké semená musela vyžiadať aj naspäť

songbook

I no longer understand my PhD dissertation (and what this means for Mathematics Education)

Anxiety, Meds, and Words from the Horizon. (So to Speak.)

Love and regret: mothers who wish they’d never had children

Does Your Daughter Know It’s OK To Be Angry?

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What is code? dlhé zaujímavé čítanie

lietadlo

before they pass away

ako dobre rozlišujete farby?

Víkendové surfovanie

báseň písaná v programovacom jazyku Perl (všetky slová v ňom existujú; program skončí bez outputu hneď na prvom riadku, keď dojde na exit)

# Larry Wall: Black Perl
BEFOREHAND: close door, each window & exit; wait until time.
    open spellbook, study, read (scan, select, tell us);
write it, print the hex while each watches,
    reverse its length, write again;
    kill spiders, pop them, chop, split, kill them.
        unlink arms, shift, wait & listen (listening, wait),
sort the flock (then, warn the "goats" & kill the "sheep");
    kill them, dump qualms, shift moralities,
    values aside, each one;
        die sheep! die to reverse the system
        you accept (reject, respect);
next step,
    kill the next sacrifice, each sacrifice,
    wait, redo ritual until "all the spirits are pleased";
    do it ("as they say").
do it(*everyone***must***participate***in***forbidden**s*e*x*).
return last victim; package body;
    exit crypt (time, times & "half a time") & close it,
    select (quickly) & warn your next victim;
AFTERWORDS: tell nobody.
    wait, wait until time;
    wait until next year, next decade;
        sleep, sleep, die yourself,
        die at last

aj takéto články sa publikujú (2005): The case of the disappearing teaspoons: longitudinal cohort study of the displacement of teaspoons in an Australian research institute

Subjects 70 discreetly numbered teaspoons placed in tearooms around the institute and observed weekly over five months.

Main outcome measures Incidence of teaspoon loss per 100 teaspoon years and teaspoon half life.

Results 56 (80%) of the 70 teaspoons disappeared during the study. The half life of the teaspoons was 81 days. The half life of teaspoons in communal tearooms (42 days) was significantly shorter than for those in rooms associated with particular research groups (77 days). The rate of loss was not influenced by the teaspoons’ value. The incidence of teaspoon loss over the period of observation was 360.62 per 100 teaspoon years. At this rate, an estimated 250 teaspoons would need to be purchased annually to maintain a practical institute-wide population of 70 teaspoons.

sochy z feromagnetickej tekutiny (áno, aj o takýchto sme bavili na tohtotýždňovom workshope v Štuttgarte):

tohtoročné Nobelove ceny – páčila sa mi hlavne veta z vyjadrenia k cene za (výpočtovú) chémiu:

Today the computer is just as important a tool for chemists as the test tube.

a aj IgNobelove ceny 2013

The problem with education? Children aren’t feral enough

When children are demonised by the newspapers, they are often described as feral. But feral is what children should be: it means released from captivity or domestication. Those who live in crowded flats, surrounded by concrete, mown grass and other people’s property, cannot escape their captivity without breaking the law. Games and explorations that are seen as healthy in the countryside are criminalised in the cities. Children who have never visited the countryside – 50% in the UK, according to WideHorizons – live under constant restraint.

Why shouldn’t every child spend a week in the countryside every term? Why shouldn’t everyone be allowed to develop the kind of skills the children I met were learning: rock climbing, gorge scrambling, caving, night walking, ropework and natural history? Getting wet and tired and filthy and cold, immersing yourself, metaphorically and literally, in the natural world: surely by these means you discover more about yourself and the world around you than you do during three months in a classroom.

kto má záujem o letenky?

Víkendové surfovanie

100 rokov, 94 kníh – zaujímavé už len porovnanie posledných 20 a prvých 20 rokov

For this blog I plan, among other things, to read and review every novel to reach the number one spot on Publishers Weekly annual bestsellers list, starting in 1913.  Beyond just a book review, I’m going to provide some information on the authors and the time at which these books were written in an attempt to figure out just what made these particular books popular at that particular time. I decided to undertake this endeavor as a mission to read books I never would have otherwise read, discover authors who have been lost to obscurity, and to see how what’s popular has changed over the last one hundred years

500 dní spolu sami

It never ceases to amaze us, but the most common question Rolf and I got after our winter-over, when we spent 15 months on the Antarctic Peninsula, nine of which were in total solitude, was: Why didn’t you two kill each other?

úplne vykuchaný biely dom (1950)

Vykuchaný Biely dom

každý deň nová maľba v Petriho miske

syna sme si našli v metre

Danny called me that day, frantic. “I found a baby!” he shouted. “I called 911, but I don’t think they believed me. No one’s coming. I don’t want to leave the baby alone…” Three months later, Danny appeared in family court to give an account of finding the baby. Suddenly, the judge asked, “Would you be interested in adopting this baby?” The question stunned everyone in the courtroom, everyone except for Danny, who answered, simply, “Yes.”

project Euler

Project Euler is a series of challenging mathematical/computer programming problems that will require more than just mathematical insights to solve. Although mathematics will help you arrive at elegant and efficient methods, the use of a computer and programming skills will be required to solve most problems. The motivation for starting Project Euler, and its continuation, is to provide a platform for the inquiring mind to delve into unfamiliar areas and learn new concepts in a fun and recreational context.

Beethoven a metronóm

Late in life, Beethoven got his hands on a metronome, went back into his symphonies, and marked them with tempos that are shockingly fast — so fast, in fact, that most conductors simply refuse to play them as marked.

Víkendové surfovanie

natural parenting (xkcd) – choďte si tam pozrieť alt. text, ktorý vidno, keď na obrázok prídete myšou

Natural parenting

predpovedanie budúcnosti

– When will a general purpose computer be small enough to be implanted inside your brain? 2030. Based on the continual shrinking of computers, by 2030 an entire computer will be the size of a pencil eraser, which would be easy to implant.

– When will a general purpose computer be able to simulate human level intelligence? Between 2024 and 2050, depending on which estimate of the complexity of human intelligence is selected, and the number of computers used to simulate it.

dĺžka kódu v rôznych jazykoch (Rosetta Code)

the people’s bailout

Now OWS is launching the ROLLING JUBILEE, a program that has been in development for months. OWS is going to start buying distressed debt (medical bills, student loans, etc.) in order to forgive it. As a test run, we spent $500, which bought $14,000 of distressed debt. We then ERASED THAT DEBT.(If you’re a debt broker, once you own someone’s debt you can do whatever you want with it — traditionally, you hound debtors to their grave trying to collect. We’re playing a different game. A MORE AWESOME GAME.)

sex-selective abortions?

Do I fight misogyny? Hell, yes! But I will not make someone else’s body my battle ground.

Being pro-choice does not mean that I always approve of someone else’s choices. It means that I believe my approval, or lack, thereof, is irrelevant. It isn’t my body. It isn’t my life. Therefore it isn’t my decision. I don’t believe that anyone should be forced to continue a pregnancy or give birth based on my personal ethics. Because no matter how sound I think my ideals may be, I don’t have to live with the effects of that pregnancy. Nor do I have to deal with the consequences. The consequences being a child.

hackovanie z feministických dôvodov

It’s annoying and awkward, to put it mildly, having to do gender-translation on the fly when Maya asks me to read what it says on the screen. You can pick your character’s name, of course – I always stick with Link, being a traditionalist – but all of the dialog insists that Link is a boy, and there’s apparently nothing to be done about it.

Well, there wasn’t anything to be done about it, certainly not anything easy, but as you might imagine I’m not having my daughter growing up thinking girls don’t get to be the hero and rescue their little brothers.

najlepšie tohtoročné obrázky pod mikroskopom

začala som hovoriť dcéram, že som krásna

I don’t want my girls to be children who are perfect and then, when they start to feel like women, they remember how I thought of myself as ugly and so they will be ugly too. They will get older and their breasts will lose their shape and they will hate their bodies, because that’s what women do. That’s what mommy did. I want them to become women who remember me modeling impossible beauty. Modeling beauty in the face of a mean world, a scary world, a world where we don’t know what to make of ourselves.

“Look at me, girls!” I say to them. “Look at how beautiful I am. I feel really beautiful, today.”

a ešte pri príležitosti štrajku učiteľov toto

Otázka od istého novinára FICOVI : /WEBnoviny 17.2.2012/
Čo považujete za najväčšiu prednosť Slovenska?
Ficova odpoveď :
Miernu povaha ľudí, ktorí žijú na Slovensku z hľadiska sociálnej výdrže. Nechceli mi veriť kolegovia, premiéri a premiérky, keď som chodil na európsku radu, že na Slovensku je bežný dôchodok 280 €. Nechceli mi veriť, že vo firme človek zarába 450 €. Povedali mi, že to je nemožné z takého niečoho vyžiť. Práve schopnosť ľudí žiť z nízkych príjmov, postarať sa o svoje rodiny aj za cenu, že títo ľudia robia často v dvoch, troch zamestnaniach, to je prednosť Slovenska. Sme podstatne životaschopnejší ako sú Francúzi, Španieli, Portugalci. Máme pred nimi náskok. Keby takáto situácia padla Španielom, že majú žiť z 300 alebo 400 €, tak asi zapália krajinu, ale naši ľudia žijú a idú ďalej. Toto je naša prednosť. A preto aj keď prídu ťažké časy, tak podstatne jednoduchšie ťažké časy prežijú krajiny ako je Slovensko.

Paralelné výpočty a softwarové tesárstvo

Náš matematický klub každý rok organizuje niečo pre svojich členov – minulý rok sme boli v Národných Laboratóriách v Brookhavene, rok predtým v Bellových Laboratóriách a tento rok sa rozhodli, že namiesto výletu bude workshop – High Performance Scientific Computing. Honosný názov pre paralelné programovanie pomocou MPI (Message Passing Interface).

Na workshop som sa prihlásila a chodila napriek tomu, že nemenovaný softwarový inžinier v našej rodine vyhlásil, že najprv sa mám naučiť programovať a potom sa môžem hrabať na niečo takéto. A treba priznať, že veľmi som tomu paralelnému programovaniu neublížila (ale podarilo sa mi napísať a rozchodiť jednoduchý kód, ktorý bežal paralelne na dvoch procesoroch môjho laptopu). Ale bolo to zaujímavé a odniesla som si odtiaľ rádovo viac ako z predmetu o paralelných výpočtoch, ktorý sme mali na matfyze v Bratislave, kde sa stratila aj taká základná myšlienka, že paralelný kód je len sériový kód bežiaci na viacerých procesoroch súčasne…

A potom nám prišiel na jeden z pravidelných piatkových seminárov prednášať Greg Wilson. Je to informatik, ktorý sa paralelným výpočtom venoval veľkú časť svojej kariéry a prišiel k záveru, že produktivita vedcov (zahŕňajúc matematikov) by sa zvýšila omnoho viac (oproti snaženiu sa zohnať výkonnejšie clustre a písať pre ne paralené programy, čo robí len veľmi malé percento, ale sú to tí, ktorí dostanú veškú pozornosť), keby sa radšej “široké vedecké masy” naučili efektívne používať počítače (takto ich používajú teraz), efektívne písať a spravovať sériové kódy a keby dobrý a dobre okomentovaný kód bol vyžadovaný pri publikácii akýchkoľvek výsledkov ním získaných.

Veľké ciele, obzvlášť, čo sa toho publikovania týka… jedna jeho štúdia dokonca ukázala, že 50% oslovených, ktorých články boli publikované v jednom nemenovanom známom journale, nevedelo zreprodukovať vlastné výsledky použitím vlastného kódu 5 mesiacov po publikácii.

Software CarpentryWilson si povedal, že tento problém treba začať riešiť z opačného konca. Založil stránku software carpentry (softwarové tesárstvo? základy? … stratená v preklade …), ktorú sa chystá počas najbližšieho roku, keby bude na sabbatical leave, znovu poriadne prepracovať a aktualizovať. Tam ponúka zadarmo online “rýchlo”-kurz toho, čo pokladá za základ pre vedecké výpočty. A naschvál to nevolá “softwarové inžinierstvo”, aby zdôraznil, že sa zameriava na praktické, hneď použiteľné veci a nie na mega projekty bežiace na veľkých clustroch. Jeho filozofia je, že je omnoho (časovo aj finančne) náročnejšie chyby opravovať, ako im predchádzať a s týmto odporúča svoj kurz prakticky každému.

A tak mi zase pribudlo niečo na môj to-do zoznam, aj keď sa nechystám prelúskať celým jeho kurzom, rada by som si toto leto prešla aspoň niektoré vybrané časti…

Na záver ešte na pobavenie úrývok (voľný preklad) zo správy Microsoftu nazvanej “K vede roku 2020”: Softwarové inžinierstvo určené pre vedu musí adresovať tri základné otázky: (i) ako narábať s veľkým objemom dát rôznych typov a formátov; (ii) ako konštruovať nové algoritmy, ktoré budú schopné vykonávať lepšiu analýzu a syntézu; a (iii) ako zdieľať zdroje medzi širokými a rozmanitými komunitami.

Všimnite si, že “ako dostať správnu odpoveď nie je na tomto zozname. Greg Wilson hovorí, že to je tým, že to momentálne nikoho netrápi – nie je to súčasťou “výpočtovej kultúry”. A tak nám len ostáva tešiť sa na deň, keď to nebude musieť byť na zozname preto, že už je to samozrejmosť.

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