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Steven Strogatz listens to a podcast guest speak about many scientific and mathematical subjects.
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Why I’m Hosting The Joy of x Podcast

January 15, 2020

The noted mathematician and author Steven Strogatz explains why he wanted to share intimate conversations with leading researchers from diverse fields in his new podcast.

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How Simple Math Can Cover Even the Most Complex Holes

January 8, 2020

No one knows how to find the smallest shape that can cover all other shapes of a certain width. But high school geometry is getting us closer to an answer.

Illustration of pathogens, vaccines, and other necessary factors for eradicating a disease.
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How to Permanently End Diseases

December 3, 2019

Smallpox was eradicated relatively quickly, but other diseases have proved harder to eliminate. The reasons are a mix of biology and psychology.

An illustration of a mathematician staring up at an infinite pile of cubes of varying sizes and colors.
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Why the Sum of Three Cubes Is a Hard Math Problem

November 5, 2019

Looking for answers in infinite space is hard. High school math can help narrow your search.

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Why I Called It ‘Quantum Supremacy’

October 2, 2019

Researchers finally seem to have a quantum computer that can outperform a classical computer. But what does that really mean?

Two competitors are racing to solve the multiplication problem 25 times 63 in two separate lanes of a running track. One competitor is using the standard multiplication algorithm while the other is using Karatsuba method.
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On Your Mark, Get Set, Multiply

September 23, 2019

The way you learned to multiply works, but computers employ a faster algorithm.

An illustration of a pink hand reaching for quantum dice.
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Where Quantum Probability Comes From

September 9, 2019

There are many different ways to think about probability. Quantum mechanics embodies them all.

Nelson, wearing hiking gear, smiles at the camera at the top of a rocky outcrop.
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Ann Nelson Took On the Biggest Problems in Physics

August 22, 2019

The theoretical particle physicist Ann Nelson, who died on August 4 at age 61, was a font of brilliant ideas and a champion of ending discrimination in the field.

Art for "Color Me Polynomial"
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Color Me Polynomial

August 13, 2019

Polynomials aren’t just exercises in abstraction. They’re good at illuminating structure in surprising places.