'A Mathematician Reads a Newspaper' With John Allen Paulos

News Story: March 1, 2010

“A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper”
By John Allen Paulos

When: March 17th 2010, 7:00 pm

Where: University Commons

John Allen Paulos is an author, popular public speaker, monthly columnist for ABCNews.com, and a professor of mathematics at Temple University. The audiences he has addressed range from those in classrooms to members of the Smithsonian, from Harvard's Nieman Fellows to its Hasty Pudding Club, from mathematical associations to stock market forums, and from NASA and the National Academy of Sciences to college gatherings, including the commencement assembly at the University of Wisconsin. Paulos has appeared frequently on radio and television, including a four-part BBC adaptation of A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper and appearances on the Lehrer News Hour, 20/20, Larry King, and David Letterman.

The talk, structured like the morning paper, investigates the mathematical angles of stories in the news. Business finance, the multiplication principle, and simple arithmetic point up consumer fallacies, electoral tricks, and sports myths. Chaos and non-linear dynamics suggest how difficult and frequently worthless economic and environmental prediction is. And mathematically pertinent notions from philosophy and psychology provide perspective on a variety of public issues.

This event is free and open to the public.