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|Ivars Peterson (MathTrek)|
|For more than 300 years, differential equations have served as powerful models of dynamic phenomena, from planetary motion in the solar system to signal transmission in nerve cells and price fluctuations in a market economy. In the August SIAM Journal of Applied Mathematics, Sergio Rinaldi of the Politecnico de Milano in Italy brings differential equations to bear on an area where such techniques have been rarely applied - the dynamics of love. He proposes a model that he claims captures the emotional ups-and-downs of the unrequited love of the celebrated poet and scholar Francesco Petrarca (1304-74), also known as Petrarch, for Laura, a beautiful but married lady of Avignon, France.|
|Levels:||Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College|
|Math Topics:||Differential Equations, Literature/Poetry|
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