Sunday, April 01, 2012

Mathematics and Sailing

Back from a highly productive week in Cambridge, Mass. The collaboration with Robert MacKay is going very well. We now how a good proof of the "Beale MacKay Theorem" and Robert is working on a brilliant generalisation for the case when one of our assumptions doesn't apply. I'm presenting the theorem at a seminar later this week in London.

Went sailing for the first time this year which was delightful. The weather was warmer than forecast, and the winds a bit lighter. There is something so extraordinary about the harmony of wind, water and boat - the fact that ideally the boat moves fastest when you are perfectly still, that the wind and waves are always subtly changing.  We need to tune the boat and get a couple of minor spares. There is something very "incarnate" about sailing - one can model the air flows mathematically but in fact it all depends on bodies, boats and the actuality of things.

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