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Volume 3, Number 27

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 6 July 1998                                   Vol. 3, No. 27


NuCalc Graphing Calculator| Behind the Numbers-Sills |
Thinking about Choice NUCALC - GRAPHING CALCULATOR 2.0 Graphing Calculator 2.0 from Pacific Tech is designed to offer a new way of looking at math, providing symbolic and numeric methods for visualizing two- and three-dimensional mathematical objects. It features a variety of 2D and 3D graphs, coordinate systems, numeric solutions, symbolic methods, animation, the ability to graph multiple functions, choices of colors, and texture map surfaces. The Web site offers a free demo to download, and a guided tour of mathematical objects: -|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|- BEHIND THE NUMBERS - Jonathan Sills (for ESPN SportsZone) "What happens when exact calculations meet the human, unpredictable factors that make sports so entertaining?" Articles by Jonathan Sills, the Zone's resident mathematician, exploring the gray area between math and sports: - BASEBALL: "Who's the King of the K?" An analysis of pitchers' balls and strikes. - BASKETBALL: "Is there a better way to rate NBA Players?" Point weightings and their overemphasis in individual ratings. - FANTASY BASEBALL: "Is it right to bench a lefty?" The statistics in fantasy baseball. - FOOTBALL: "How should we poll?" Who's really No. 1 in college football? It's all about the variance. - GOLF: "How tough is Q-school?" A look at the PGA's method of qualifying members. - HOCKEY: "Can math help hockey schedules?" "The worst job in hockey". - SOCCER: "World Cup 1998: What's the point of a victory?" A combinatoric and probabilistic analysis of recent rule changes for advancing through rounds of the World Cup. - STRONGMAN: "How strong is the world's strongest man?" The point basis for judging this competition. Jonathan Sills is a Chicago native who was a Fulbright Scholar at Oxford. He's done informal consulting with minor-league hockey and baseball, using math to help leagues determine schedules. He holds a degree in Civil Engineering and Operations Research from Princeton University. -|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|- THINKING ABOUT CHOICE - a math-teach discussion "Why can't teachers allow children to make at least some choices in math as we do in other subjects?" - Mary O'Keefe "If... the problems at hand are such as to require real thought, then students need work only a handful - and the instructor should both require them to express their thought and engage that thought himself when grading it. In this case, choice is reasonable." - Lou Talman "... one thing I think that many of the experienced teachers may be forgetting is the amount of work involved in teaching when you are first learning how..." - Pat Krivoshein "What makes a magician masterful is not the choices given the audience, rather it is the illusion of choices. - Ron Ferguson A discussion that touches on using keys to grade assignments, making homework more thought-provoking, varying the way students are assigned routine skills, the use of estimating, the teacher's responsibility to the student, and the kinds and merits of choice in the math classroom. For more MATH-TEACH threads, see the Math Forum's Web archive or subscribe to the mailing list. -|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|-\-/-|- CHECK OUT OUR WEB SITE: The Math Forum Ask Dr. Math Problems of the Week Internet Resources Join the Math Forum Send comments to the Math Forum Internet Newsletter editors _o \o_ __| \ / |__ o _ o/ \o/ __|- __/ \__/o \o | o/ o/__/ /\ /| | \ \ / \ / \ /o\ / \ / \ / | / \ / \

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