Math is Everywhere: Applications of Finite Math

Computer fonts, Angry Birds, March Madness, and Google - sound like fun? Indeed, math influences the world around us.
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Understand how you can benefit from applications of math in your every day life.



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Computer fonts, Angry Birds, March Madness, and Google — sound like fun?  Indeed, finite math is engaging and influences the world around us.  

Equations of lines can allow computers to create fonts, store them quite compactly, and render them at essentially any desired resolution.  Plotting the graph of a polynomial can affect how you play Angry Birds as you strive to dislodge the pesky pigs.  Linear systems model the performance of sports teams and influence which college football teams play in the new year bowl games.  You can create your own linear equations to help you create a bracket for March Madness.  Finally, probability and simulation lies at the core of the mathematical algorithm that catapulted Google as a leader in search engines.  

You benefit from applications of finite math every day.  Through this course, you can better understand how you benefit from applications of finite math in your every day life.  Along the way, you will likely learn new mathematical ideas, too.

Course content

10 sections20 lectures5h 26m total length
  • Course Introduction


Associate Professor of Mathematics - Davidson College
Tim Chartier
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Tim Chartier is an Associate Professor of Mathematics at Davidson College. He is a recipient of a national teaching award from the Mathematical Association of America. Published by Princeton University Press, Tim coauthored Numerical Methods: Design, Analysis, and Computer Implementation of Algorithms with Anne Greenbaum. As a researcher, Tim has worked with both Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos National Laboratories on the development and analysis of computational methods targeted to increase efficiency and robustness of numerical simulation on the lab’s supercomputers, which are among the fastest in the world. Tim’s research with and beyond the labs was recognized with an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship.

Tim serves on the Editorial Board for Math Horizons, a mathematics magazine of the Mathematical Association of America. He also on the Advisory Board of YourMusicOn (YMO), a mobile music startup company and the Advisory Council for the Museum of Mathematics, which will be the first museum of mathematics in the United States and opens in December 2012. Tim has been a resource for a variety of media inquiries which includes fielding mathematical questions for the Sports Science program on ESPN. He also writes for the Science blog of the Huffington Post.

As an artist, Tim has trained at Le Centre du Silence mime school and Dell’Arte School of International Physical Theater. He also studied in master classes with Marcel Marceau. Tim has taught and performed mime throughout the United States and in national and international settings.

In his time apart from academia, Tim enjoys the performing arts, mountain biking, nature walks and hikes, and spending time with his family.

Learn more about Prof. Chartier's teaching, research and presentations with mime and math on his blog.