Mathematics explains how giant ‘whirlpools’ form in developing egg cells

The swirling currents occur when the rodlike structures that extend inward from the cells’ membranes bend in tandem, like stalks of wheat caught in a strong

Cambridge University News • cambridge
Jan. 13, 2021 ~5 min

 mathematics  cell  maths  eggs

What is a margin of error? This statistical tool can help you understand vaccine trials and political polling

Whether you are predicting the outcome of an election or studying how effective a new drug is, there will always be some uncertainty. A margin of error is how statisticians measure that uncertainty.

Ofer Harel, Professor of Statistics, University of Connecticut • conversation
Jan. 6, 2021 ~5 min

mathematics statistics predictions drug-development curiosity polls political-polling scientific-studies vaccine-efficacy

Model could help determine quarantine measures needed to reduce Covid-19’s spread

A key finding: Early reopening last spring led to a dramatic drop in “quarantine strength” in southern and west-central U.S. states.

Jennifer Chu | MIT News Office • mit
Dec. 14, 2020 ~9 min

machine-learning mathematics artificial-intelligence covid-19 pandemic disease research mechanical-engineering school-of-engineering school-of-science technology-and-society disaster-response

Computers still can’t solve this cookie cutter dilemma

If you've ever wondered how to use cookie cutters to minimize wasted dough, you've homed in on a math problem no algorithm can yet handle.

Maria Hornbek-Copenhagen • futurity
Dec. 8, 2020 ~6 min

mathematics food holidays computers algorithms featured science-and-technology

Reopening elementary schools carries less COVID-19 risk than high schools – but that doesn't guarantee safety

New research points to why reopening elementary schools is the safest bet and what else needs to happen for schools to have the best chance of staying open.

Justin Remais, Associate Professor and Chair of Environmental Health Sciences, University of California, Berkeley • conversation
Aug. 25, 2020 ~9 min

education health covid-19 coronavirus schools pandemic science high-school k-12-education mathematical-models teachers k-12-online-learning elementary-schools