Cars (and trucks) have been used as weapons by drivers purposefully driving into crowds including:

2014: Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec

2014 : Jerusalem, Israel.

2016: Nice, France

2016: Berlin, Germany

2017: Jerusalem, Israel

2017: Melbourne, Australia.

What does the maths tell us?

Melbourne is Mathspig’s home town. The car attack killed, tragically, 6 people and injured many more. The question many seem to ask is:

Why can’t people get out of the way?

Look at the video below of the Melbourne car. It doesn’t appear to be going that fast. But the maths tells a different story. You need quite a distance between you and a car travelling at approx 60 kph to have enough time to run clear. (See calculations below)

How fast do you react?

We will set your reaction time at 0.4 sec. This allows time for you to react and turn. If you want to test your reaction time go here. But remember you have to turn as well.

How fast would you run?

According to the Telegraph, UK, the average human can run at 15.9 mph (25.6 kph) and the National Council of Strength and Fitness 15 mph (24.1kph), which Mathspig has rounded off to 25 kph.

How do you escape a car travelling at 60 kph towards you when you are less than 9 m away?

Jump upwards!

You might reduce the impact and even go over the roof.

The Maths Mystery Box is a great treasure chest to take into maths classes. It can be used an an extension exercise or to engage some disengaged students.

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The IDEA is to use concrete objects and write a maths problem to go with the object. (See examples below) The appeal of the MATHS MYSTERY BOX is that it involves CONCRETE THINKING, sort of. All text books involve ABSTRACT thinking, which some students do not like.

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A student picks a maths problem from the box. A problem can be simple or complex. But it is not just a maths problem. The student gets to hold an object in their hand. They have to devise their own method of approach. And they must be resourceful. ie. use equipment at hand eg. their phone as a stop watch. Students like this activity. Even maths teachers like this activity as Mathspig found out at her workshop in Hamburg.

It is Mathspig’s Mission to bring you news of some of the most practical, inspiring and intriguing maths blogs, tumblr posts and Twitter feeds out there in the blogosphere. And what a great day to do this. Happy Square Root Day people! (from Mathematica Curiosa below)

The following blogs et al fall into the RANDOM but totally intriguing category. Enjoy!

When not writing and hosting Quick and Dirty Tips’ Math Dude podcast, Jason Marshall works as a research scientist at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) studying the infrared light emitted by starburst galaxies and quasars. Here he is as The Maths Dude:

And here he is as an Astrophysicist dude:

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Curiosa Mathematica is run by Jens Bossaert. It shows extraudinary images such as the animation by two cubes showing the roots of the polynomials x⁵ + tx + 1 and x⁵ + tx² + 1 as t varies. (Shown without animation below) I’d tell you lots more about Jens except his homepage is in Dutch!!!

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LIFE THROUGH A MATHEMATICIAN’S EYES is a tumblr feed run anonymously but fabulously by a self-described ‘professional mathematical concept disrupter’ who ‘believes that the study of mathematics is like air or water to our technological society’.

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Try and Touch My AsymptoteGot Math? is an annonymous Tumblr stream that is a popouri of all sorts of maths brick-a-brack such as the treasure below..

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Into The Continuum is self-described as a perspective on mathematics, the pattern, and the abstract. This anonymous Tumblr feed not only provides amazing moving patterns, it gives you the code as well. Awesome!!! Here is one, sadly stationary, pattern below.

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Robert Kaplinsky has worked in education since 2003 as a classroom teacher, district math teacher specialist, and University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) instructor. He uses maths to answer some really intrguing questions such as the one below. ‘What was the fastest motorcycle speeding ticket ever?’ is pretty scary!!!!!!!

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Math Prof for Life Tumblr stream uses random comments linked to hilarious gifs. The prof knows, he really knows, how maths students feel … on a bad maths day.

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The Reflective Educator is the Tumblr stream of David Wees, a Canadian Maths teacher. His web page is full of all sorts of interesting reflections on how to teach maths.

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Center of Math is an anonymous Twitter feed which is a glad bag of maths ideas, suggestions, diversions and jokes. Intersesting stuff. Here rre some fab examples of posts.

It’s a pun … maths pun. (Hint: A little fishy.)

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Math Jokes Twitter is literally an endless stream of maths jokes. Who knew there were so many? And what better way to start the day than with a maths joke. Here are a couple.

I started this blog several years ago because I found myself trying to convince teachers that maths could be fun, FUN, FUN at conferences. Sometimes it was like talking to a carton of eggs. So I had to show teachers that maths could be fun. With over 900,000 hits, you could say, my evil plan worked.After several years of blogging, I had an epiphany. Having studied maths at university for 5 years, then teaching maths for 10 years up to and including Year 12, suddenly, I realised I never wanted to know the answer to any maths problem I solved. I simply wanted to get the answer right and move on.

I taught in some tough high schools. On my first day at one high school a student threw a bike off a roof. Now I understand their rage. I loved maths from day 1, but only a small % of students love maths for the challenge. It’s like Latin, a dead language, to many students and therefore ‘booooring’.

So now I concentrate on the TOUGH YEARS: Middle School. Students want to know the answer to the questions I ask. eg. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE A 14 YO TO BLEED TO DEATH? It’s a great graph. They want to know the answer! I aim to make the maths REAL, RELEVANT and FUN. Maths teachers don’t have time to be creative. So now I’m expanding my empire by creating the WORKSHEETS that I would have wanted for my challenging classes.My friend here, Roni, who is an unidentified marsupial and a little dodgy, will guide you through the worksheets.

I’m following the Common Core Standards for the USA. Hey! I’v done the math!

So here are the worksheets that motivate students, even difficult students, to DO THE MATH or MATHS. The first one is free and then there’s a small fee and me and Roni are going to clear outa town with all the loot. Ha!