There are several sessions dealing with the history of mathematics and its use in teaching. These are listed below. For the full program of Mathfest, click here.
Minicourse #1: EULER
William W. Dunham, Muhlenberg College
Edward C. Sandifer, Western Connecticut State University
Part 1: Thursday, August 10, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Part 2: Friday, August 11, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Euler wrote and published over 850 books and papers. They form the basis for huge segments of modern mathematics. We will survey his many contributions and take a close look at a few of them. We will demonstrate how to use Euler's 18th century mathematics in a 21st century environment, and we will show by example why Laplace was giving good advice when he said, "Read Euler, read Euler. He is the master of us all."
Panel Discussion: GÖDEL'S CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE FOUNDATION OF MATHEMATICS
Ron Barnes, University of Houston-Downtown
Linda Becerra, University of Houston-Downtown
Friday, August 11, 1:00 pm - 2:20 pm
This session is offered in recognition of the 100th anniversary of his birth. Panel participants will discuss: (1) an outline of the situation of the foundations of mathematics before Gödel’s results; (2) Gödel’s results and their interpretations and applications in mathematics; (3) an outline of their implications in computer science and other areas; (4) a summary list of what has evolved since Gödel’s time; and (5) a consideration of what questions in the foundations of mathematics have not yet been resolved. A summary listing of results already proven or decided in the foundations of mathematics along with a companion listing of conjectures not yet resolved will be provided to the session attendees. After short presentations of the above considerations, questions from the floor will be entertained by the panelists.
The panelists will be John Dawson, Penn State University at York, “An Overview of the Foundations of Mathematics, Before, During and After Gödel” and Martin Davis, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, New York University, “Why Mathematicians Should Care about Gödel's Work.” This program is dedicated in remembrance of Professor Torkel Franzen, a leading authority on Gödel and author of Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete guide to its Use and Abuse, who died on April 19, 2006. The session is sponsored by HOM SIGMAA.
Invited Address: STORIES FROM THE HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS
David Bressoud, Macalester College
Saturday, August 12, 10:30 am - 11:20 am
This is a collection of some of my favorite stories from the history of mathematics, stories that I use in my classes to illustrate what it really means to "do" mathematics.
Invited Paper Sessions: STORIES FROM THE HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS AS A TOOL FOR TEACHING
David Bressoud, Macalester College, organizer
Saturday, August 12, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Speakers will include John McCleary, Vassar College, "Euler's Easy Solutions to Difficult geometric problems"; Rob Tubbs, University of Colorado, Boulder, "From e^pi to 2^(sqrt2), Motivating the Solution to Hilbert's 7th problem"; Fred Rickey, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, "Some Tested Examples for Using History in Your Classroom"; and Ed Sandifer, Western Connecticut State University, "Theorem First, or Example First: Newton vs Leibniz Again."