Sad News: John Nash dies at 86

Perhaps the saddest news this week are the deaths of famous mathematician John Nash, 86, and wife Alicia, 82 in a car accident last Saturday, May 23. Nash was known for his work in Economics (Game Theory) particularly on the Nash equilibrium as well as his contributions real algebraic geometry.  He received the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1994, a Double Helix Medal in 2010, and an Abel Prize this year.

John Nash

image via Wikipedia

The life of John Nash, particularly his battle with paranoid schizophrenia, was detailed in Sylvia Nasar’s A Beautiful Mind which was later made into a  Hollywood film where Nash was portrayed by Russell Crowe.

Many people expressed their grief on Nash’s death through Twitter and other social media sites. His death is truly a big loss to the mathematics community.

Practice Solving Equations with Equate Board Game

If you want your children or students practice equations and operations, you might want to try Equate: The Equation Thinking Game. Equate is a math board game that works like Scrabble. In Equate, instead of forming words, you can form equations. Younger children can choose an easy game which only consists of addition and subtraction, while older children can include multiplication and subtraction. Even more challenging is to include fractions!

Just like Scrabble, you can have double or triple scores in Equate. This can make players think of equations that yields a larger answers, while practicing their arithmetic.

Equate can be played 2-4 players ages 8 years old and above.

Although this game is challenging, it could also take a while to finish one game. Games which include fraction is expected to last up to 120 minutes.

5 Free Math Software For Teaching and Learning Mathematics

Years ago, I met a Japanese professor who eventually became my adviser during my one and a half year stay in Japan.  CRICED, the institute he was working also develops mathematics software in elementary and secondary schools. Below are 5 of the math software that they have developed.

1.) Grapes – a graphing software that allows users to draw most functions discussed in the secondary curriculum.

2.) Geometric Constructor –  a dynamic geometry software for teaching and learning geometry. Allows users to publish contents on the web.

3.) DbookPro – a tool for developing digital textbook. This can be done by scanning textbooks and or importing textbooks images. I have written two manuals of dbook (basic and advanced) and you can view the sample output of a dbook here.  You can download dbookPro here.

4.) Geometry Construction Language (GCL) Editor – an xml-based software used for creating educational materials in Flash.

5.) DGraph – Used for making and editing graphs from data and equation.

I have only tried 2 of these software (dbookPro and Grapes), but you might want to explore all of them.

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