You have 12 billiard (or snooker) balls, all the same except one which is slightly heavier – or it may be slightly lighter – than the rest.
You have scales which you can use to compare balls (or groups of balls) with each other.
How can you identify the odd ball by using the scales only three times? Continue reading
Notes from a lecture (19 June 2014) by Richard Taylor, who worked with Andrew Wiles to prove Fermat’s last theorem.
Click here for notes on Taylor’s lecture (pdf) .
And here is an article by Taylor explaining some of his ideas to non-specialist readers.
Thanks to Hasnaa Shaddad and Chris Wright for coming to CoLA on 12 November 2015 to run a session on “What engineers do, and how they use maths”, focusing on the Rayleigh-Plesset bubble equation. Continue reading