Butter boxes to galaxies—the beauty of mathematics

“Do you know the Land O’Lakes butter box?” This is an odd question for Daniel Alexander. He’s a professor of mathematics at Drake University, and he’s trying to explain the complex mathematical phenomenon known as fractals. Given the context, butter cartons feel more than a bit off topic. It’s not obvious how they have anything … Continue reading Butter boxes to galaxies—the beauty of mathematics

The temporally-integrated dolphin on etymology relating to newspapers

There’s a reason why the words text and textile are so similar. They both stem from sheep’s wool. Wool shows up in many places in the English language. The Latin word for tuft of wool is burra, which incidentally often covered desks, giving us words like bureau and bureaucracy.  The first printing press in England … Continue reading The temporally-integrated dolphin on etymology relating to newspapers