There is a place, a wondrous, magical place, filled with transformations and amazing discoveries. It’s not Narnia or El Dorado. No, this place is real. This is Mathworld.
Mathworld is the place where math people live. They eat and breath in the everyday world, but their thoughts and notes are filled with x’s and y’s and other strange symbols. What they do can be very useful–email and blogs couldn’t happen without Mathworld–but it seems like another place.
Truth be told, I live in Mathworld a lot of the time. Investments and earnings and bond markets are filled with such calculations. But recently I was exposed to some Higher Math: a place of modular arithmetic and topology and fractals. I felt like a trespasser on forbidden ground. It was clear that I only live on the border. The true mysteries of Mathworld lay somewhere to the interior.
All kidding aside, advances in Mathematics have given us abundant food, inexpensive travel, and ubiquitous communications. But these advances seem to rely upon a Faustian bargain with Mathworld’s citizens: give us our toys and you can have your tools.
I’m just glad that Mathworld doesn’t depend on me. Another fruit of a diversified economy.
Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA
Chief Investment Officer
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