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MAA Math Alert - February 2009

News and Views

Media Outlets Score Math Highlights from 2009 Joint Math Meetings
The news media uncovered a variety of newsworthy topics at the 2009 Joint Mathematics Meetings, which were held in Washington, D.C., in early January. Read More

Math Awareness Month 2009: Mathematics and Climate
This year, the MAA, American Mathematical Society, Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, and American Statistical Association have jointly proclaimed that the theme of Mathematics Awareness Month—April 2009—shall be "Mathematics and Climate." Read More

Engineers Week 2009: February 15 – 21
National Engineers Week is dedicated to promoting a diverse and well-educated future engineering workforce by increasing understanding of, and interest in, engineering and technology careers among young students and by promoting pre-college literacy in math and science. Read More

MathFest 2009 Call for Paper Now Open
Go to to submit your abstract for a Contributed Paper Session or a Student Paper Session.

Featured Articles

The Mathematical Tourist by Ivars Peterson: Pondering an Artist's Perplexing Tribute to the Pythagorean Theorem
Ivars Peterson delves into the controversy surrounding the cover of the January 2009 issueofTheCollege Mathematics Journal. Read More

How Euler Did It by Ed Sandifer: Estimating pi
Ed Sandifer tells the story and shows the complex mathematics behind Euler’s estimation of the value of pi. Read More

New From the MAA

Biscuits of Number Theory by Arthur T. Benjamin and Bud Brown, editors
In Biscuits of Number Theory , the editors have chosen articles that are exceptionally well-written and that can be appreciated by anyone who has taken (or is taking) a first course in number theory. This book could be used as a textbook supplement for a number theory course, especially one that requires students to write papers or do outside reading. Read More

Uncommon Mathematical Excursions by Dan Kalman
Designed to surprise, intrigue, and delight readers, Uncommon Mathematical Excursions presents unexpected aspects of the mathematics surrounding the standard curriculum, guiding readers to little-known corners of the mathematical landscape not far from the main byways of algebra, geometry, and calculus. It is for seasoned mathematical travelers who have already visited these subjects and, familiar with the main attractions, are ready to step off the beaten track. Read More

Boost Your Career with the MAA Professional Enhancement Program
PREP 2009 workshops offer a wide range of options for you to work with colleagues from across the country to advance mathematics. Whether you're just starting your career and looking for new ideas for research and teaching, or you've been teaching for years and need strategies to manage your department, PREP has something for you. Read More

New SIGMAA on Math Circles for Students and Teachers Established
A new “SIGMAA on Circles” had their first official meeting at the 2009 Joint Mathematics Meetings. The goal of this SIGMAA is to give math circles – both student math circles and math teacher circles – greater visibility and a permanent presence in the mathematical and educational landscape. To sign up you can download the SIGMAA form or call the Membership Service Center at 1-800-331-1622.

Order MAA Posters: "Women of Mathematics" and "Ethnomathematics"
The MAA is still taking orders for its two new posters,Women of MathematicsandEthnomathematics. Both posters are available from the MAA while supplies last for a $10.00 postage and handling fee per poster. Read More

MAA’s Most Popular Books on Amazon
The following is a list of the MAA's ten bestselling items onAmazon.comfor the month of January, 2009. Read More

Check out the New 2009 Catalog of Publications! View Here

New MAA Baseball Hat
Available for purchase at the MAA Bookstore.



Mark Your Calendars for MathFest 2009, August 6-8
Bring your Family, Enjoy the City

MAA has contracted with Creative Childcare Solutions to provide affordable childcare services (approximately $10 per family per hour) before, during, and after the MathFest 2009 meeting in Portland, Oregon. Please visit to get more information, or contact Michelle directly at 503-518-2274.

Publishing Date: 
February, 2009