Tue July 26, 2011
"Dude, Can You Count?" (Encore presentation.)
By Rich Fisher
Tulsa, Oklahoma – (Please note: This show originally aired earlier this year.) On today's show, a lively and far-ranging discussion with Christian Constanda, the Oliphant Endowed Chair in Mathematical Sciences at the University of Tulsa. As the author, editor, or translator of more than a dozen books --- and having written, moreover, 120+ peer-reviewed articles --- Constanda is among the leading math-related academics in America. (He's taught at colleges and university all over the world, and in 2002, his textbook on partial differential equations was named an Outstanding Academic Title by Choice magazine of the American Library Association.) Interestingly, Constanda's latest book has been created with lay readers in mind. It's a clever, accessible, and engaging book called "Dude, Can You Count? Stories, Challenges and Adventures in Mathematics." In this work, Constanda makes mathematical points and provides logistical examples in a variety of interesting, amusing, diverting, puzzling, and/or non-abstruse ways --- it's high-level math for the rest of us, so to speak, and it's also quite fun to read. As one reviewer/commentator of this book has noted at the Amazon.com site: "With the presence of extraterrestrial characters, colorful discussions concerning the fate of humankind, mathematical problems, and jokes in every chapter, one can only wonder: What more can a person ask for?"