Gazette Issue 2 (May) now online

The May issue of the Gazette is now online at http://www.austms.org.au/Gazette+Volume+36+Number+2+May+2009 .

The lack of suitably qualified maths teachers has long been a concern, but recently the state of maths education in Australia has received wide press coverage. Nalini Joshi discusses the recent coverage in her President’s column, and highlights the sometimes illogical arguments that have to be countered when dealing with national issues affecting mathematics.

But a good supply of well prepared maths students is only part of the answer, and we are all aware of the difficult situation of mathematics in universities. In Maths Matters, Larry Forbes tries to overcome ‘review fatigue’ to reflect on the reaction of the maths community to the Bradley Review of Higher Education. Will concentrating mathematical research in a few centres create the great mathematicians of tomorrow, or would it be better to embed mathematics in all degrees across the country?

Norman Do’s Puzzle Corner once again not only provides you with opportunities for glory and a trip to the book shop (congratulations to James East, winner of Puzzle Corner 10), it has also inspired Gerry Myerson’s paper on error-correcting codes. And this issue’s Puzzle Corner gives you a chance to apply mathematics to your vegetable drawer, and might just inspire you to new culinary heights, as well as mathematical ones!

This issue contains the first of a new series, ‘Mathematical minds’, where we interview Australian mathematicians about their work and their lives, and try to understand the minds behind maths. This issue’s interview is with Nalini Joshi, who tells us how she went from the child of Burmese migrants to the top of the mathematical profession today.

For those of you who thought the Access Grid was only accessible from dedicated AG suites, Bill Blyth and Jason Bell give alternative ways to make use of this technology via your humble desktop or laptop computer. We also have a paper on a geometric approach to saddle points, book reviews and all the news from Australian mathematics.

There are plenty of books available for review on the Gazette website (see http://www.austms.org.au/Gazette+-+books+available+for+review). Please contact us if you would like to review one of these books or suggest another reviewer.

Happy reading from the Gazette team.

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