Author Archives: Brent

About Brent

Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Hendrix College. Functional programmer, mathematician, teacher, pianist, follower of Jesus.

Games with factorization diagram cards

Since I published a deck of factorization diagram cards last September, a few teachers have picked up copies of the cards and started using them with their students. I’ve started collecting ideas for games you can play using the cards, … Continue reading

Posted in arithmetic, counting, games, pattern, pictures, primes, teaching | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The MacLaurin series for sin(x)

In my previous post I said “recall the MacLaurin series for :” Since someone asked in a comment, I thought it was worth mentioning where this comes from. It would typically be covered in a second-semester calculus class, but it’s … Continue reading

Posted in calculus, infinity, iteration | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Basel problem

I wanted to follow up on something I mentioned in my previous post: I claimed that At the time I didn’t know how to prove this, but I did some quick research and today I’m going to explain it! It … Continue reading

Posted in infinity, number theory | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

The Riemann zeta function

Recall from my previous post that given a function , we define , the Dirichlet generating function of , by We also proved that : the product of Dirichlet generating functions is the Dirichlet generating function of the Dirichlet convolution. … Continue reading

Posted in number theory | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Dirichlet generating functions

Suppose is a function defined for positive integers . Then we can define an infinite series as follows: (This might look a bit strange, but bear with me!) For example, suppose for all . Then (Note that in this case, … Continue reading

Posted in number theory | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

More fun with Dirichlet convolution

I’m back after a bit of a hiatus for the holidays! Last time we saw how the principle of Möbius inversion arises from considering the function from the point of view of Dirichlet convolution. Put simply, the Möbius function is … Continue reading

Posted in number theory | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Paper torus with Villarceau circles

I made another thing! This is a torus, made from 24 crescent-shaped pieces of paper with slots cut into them so they interlock with each other. I followed these instructions on cutoutfoldup.com. There is also a template with some ideas … Continue reading

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