Illusive patterns in math explained by ideas in physics

Patterns appear widely throughout nature and math, from the Fibonacci spirals of sea shells to the periodicity of crystals. But certain math problems can sometimes trick the human solver into seeing a pattern, but then, out ...

How close to invisible can a mirror be?

(Phys.org)—In 2011, mathematicians Alexander Plakhov and Vera Roshchina proved that objects with mirror surfaces cannot be perfectly invisible. Now in a new study, Plakhov has returned to the problem, asking just how close ...

The mathematics of golf

(Phys.org)—The official Rules of Golf, which are continually being revised and updated as new equipment emerges, have close ties to mathematics. In many cases, math is used to place limitations on golf equipment, such as ...

Why too much evidence can be a bad thing

(Phys.org)—Under ancient Jewish law, if a suspect on trial was unanimously found guilty by all judges, then the suspect was acquitted. This reasoning sounds counterintuitive, but the legislators of the time had noticed ...

Mathematicians settle 30-year-old resonance controversy

In the early '80s, several researchers were working to determine the location of atomic and molecular resonances, which are the frequencies at which atoms and molecules prefer to oscillate. Two groups of researchers (Rittby, ...

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