Final Project

After an extensive amount of time and technical difficulties, I have completed my final project, which relates Mathematics to Art:

http://courses.utulsa.edu/engl2393jd/mathematics/index.php/Main_Page

Two of the greatest issues in doing this project were content and technology. Although most word content was simple, the examples, particularly one on geometric design, took much time to formulate and present. As for the technology aspect, formatting required much work. There were many features that needed to be adjusted before I could upload images, symbols, and videos. However, just as complicated was the process for having the images to upload. All of my images came from a combination of scanned images that I personally made, graphs produced on Mathematica, pictures straight from the internet, and images that I produced on Wordle. Once all of these images were with the rest of my content on a Microsoft Word file, they had to be copied into Paint, where they were saved as jpeg files. These files were then uploaded onto Flickr, after which I was able to get the URL links to embed the images onto my page. Fortunately, the word content from the Microsoft Word file copied straight into the wiki.

In my project, I address the applications of Mathematics, and particularly how Art is not often on the top of that list. I go on to explain how, although we don’t usually think about Math in the visual arts, it is still an underlying feature. There are also a few examples of how Math can be applied to Art, whether in geometric design or abstract art, which include formulas, images, and videos.

After all of the work that this project required, I can say that I have a much greater understanding of the complexity involved in digital media. In my project I used a wiki, which included Wordle images, my podcast video, and several other types of media images. Media becomes especially complex when more types of media are used. Still, I have found this overall experience to be very helpful for a future closely tied to the digital world, for which I believe I am better prepared.

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Reading

After looking at some of the different sites during our last class period, including the hegirascope and absurd.org, I have concluded that we can put various things on the internet, namely literature and tools relevant to what we do. However, if we do not connect them in the right manner, they will be of no use to us. When we looked at the hegirascope, we were given various literary passages. When presented in a logical flow, one can learn a lot about a particular subject matter or author based on the connections between the pieces. On the other hand, when presented in an illogical and seemingly unconnected manner, this produces only frustration and confusion for the readers, since they might not be sure what they should connect.

These ideas can be connected to my field, in that Mathematics is one of the most logic-based fields. A mathematics textbook can sometimes be difficult to understand as one moves from one section to the next. Yet, each new section builds on the next. In the same manner, a mathematician might use some conclusion that he or she has deduced in another problem order to arrive at a new conclusion. For example, in geometry, one needs certain angles and side lengths of a triangle in order to be able to calculate the others. However, if the textbook, or a written (or digitized) solution of the mathematician’s findings, or the order in which the triangle’s measurements were presented out of order, a reader would likely not understand how that method or conclusion was reached. Therefore, order and logic are very important for any subject matter in order for readers to have the greatest possible understanding of what is being presented to them.

Mapping and Social Networking

In my opinion, mapping can be very useful for Mathematics. Mapping is all about taking data and putting it in a form that is easier to view and understand. At the same time, Mathematics is all about finding data, and finding the connections and significance of that data. As usual, applied Mathematics might be greater benefited, in that the data relates to certain situations. Still, standard Mathematics is all about looking for relationships between equations. For example, when wanting to find and compare the derivative, or slope, of a function, f(x), at any given point of a curve, one could use mapping to compare all x- and y-values of the derivative. This could be used to find critical points, where the function is increasing and decreasing, etc.

From our use of the Gephi project in class, I find that such visualizations can be a link between many different fields, including but not limited to English, Mathematics, and Art. This combination allows people with different perceptions to look at the same image, and still comprehend it, rather than needing to put it in a different form. For example, one might have an image that depicts an analysis of a piece of literature. The English students can mouse over certain areas and look at the literary, historical, emotional, or other similarities between one piece and others. A mathematics student can consider the number of items that fall into any given category. A student of Art might look at the overall picture and, without regarding specific quantities or features, understand the general connections between any items depicted in the image.

I think that the use of mapping and social networking is a fun and sometimes-beneficial tool for expressing data. However, I do not think that it is always completely necessary. For example, a person wanting to compare connections between various airports in the United States (as we did in class) may see the mapping ability as very helpful in order to understand how one airport is connected to all others in a particular region. However, someone that wants to see information concerning a particular flight course may only want to see the stops from their departure to arrival, and not necessarily all the other cities that their departure airport goes to. Therefore, mapping may be more or less beneficial due to particular circumstances.

Mapping and Social Networking

Mapping and Social Networking can be used for many things, many of us have never heard about. Our personal favorite probably being facebook and twitter but not everything in social networking has to be targeted to what you and your friends have to say. It could be informational. Like the airline data we played with in class. Although Gephi didn’t work as well as planned in class I can see the programs potential.

Mapping in CS, I think that this would be a great use in the teaching of CS so the students can see a visual representation of how all the methods and classes relate to one another. Sometimes seeing it all in one picture clears things right up and there is no more confusion. This semester is the first time I have ever took a programming class and so far all my teacher has used is the board and a marker. Everything in my notes is just writing after writing. Visuals would not only introduce another type of learning but would also make the class more exciting.

Mapping in Mathmatics, numbers do nothing but correlate so this could be used in so many different ways. I think it would be alot easier and more fun than dealing with Mathmatica. Ugh, that program can be frustrating.

As far as Social Networking goes I don’t see much room for it in the math and Science department because we are so analytical. There is no discussion really cause most things in math and science only have one answer. Maybe I’m just too narrow minded and don’t see a creative connection. The only thing that struck my mind was creating data on gephi to show wi-fi areas, so that no matter where you were you could find somewhere to go for internet service but thats just conveinence that has nothing to do with research or learning.

All in all, I had fun with this assignment. I don’t know if I will use Gephi again but it will remain on my computer just in case.

Mathematics Applied to Abstract Art

As usual, it was initially very difficult for me to come up with a topic for the podcast, relating to the major of mathematics. However, I am interested in geometric designs, which gave me the idea of incorporated math into this concept. It was almost as difficult to narrow my focus, but my research gradually led me to focus on abstract art. I’m glad I did this, for one because I can think of few other topics that would be appropriate, but also because it combined two things that I know a lot about and enjoy the subject of.

For my project I used Windows Movie Maker, which was not difficult, since I have used it several times in the past. However, due to many technical malfunctions the process was extremely time consuming. These include going between various computers, some with Movie Maker and Internet, but unfortunately usually only one of the two. Also, I went between Macs and PCs with my image and video files. To top that off, my computer was all the while disfunctional, requiring me to use a very old and very slow computer to create my movie on. These are only some of several other problems I faced in this process. However, the time factor excluded, I had a lot of fun with this assignment. I always have fun putting these types of things together, so I would say it was worth it in the end.

Multimedia in Mathematics

It is difficult for me to say exactly in what ways multimedia is used in mathematics. This is because I am still a freshman looking into the field. However, by now I can say that it is used to a greater or lesser extent, depending on one’s focused area within the field. For example, I have already been required to look up articles on the internet to learn more about particular topics. As such, certain information can be quite useful when trying to consider a subject of interest or concern. Still, other students in applied math may be currently using multimedia more than myself. For those in the field of applied mathematics, multimedia could be very useful for informative or advertising purposes. This includes advertising new foods, pieces of technology, and other beneficial products, which are associated with the mathematical field.

Theory math, on the other hand, may require another type of multimedia. Some beneficial types that are frequently used in businesses and other corporations are the use of charts, diagrams, written proposals, etc. for the purpose of proposing ideas to the business. Also, if the proposal is accepted and put into effect, the finished product often requires advertisement. Furthermore, if the product is of a seemingly great enough significance, then newspapers or reporters may want to do a piece on the subject, all of which goes back to the designer. Therefore, it can be gathered that multimedia serves a very important role in theory, as well as applied mathematics.