## Mathematica details of the cooking with maths post – part 2

So, by the end of the previous post on Mathematica and Graph Theory, we had managed to take our single string of text and turn it into a graph of ingredients where nodes linked by edges go well together. Now we actually want to do something useful with this data – ie. come up with some recipes!

We will refer in the following to foodgraph as the graph of all of the food pairings we started with.

We will define a recipe very loosely as a set of ingredients all of which go well together. This is clearly far from a real recipe, but it’s a pretty good starting point for one.

Within the graph, a set of ingredients which all go well together form what is known as a connected subgraph – each node is linked to every other node. It’s no good having a recipe where A goes well with B and B goes well with C, but A doesn’t go well with C.…

## Mathematica details of the cooking with mathematics post – part 2

Part 1 in this series can be found here.

So, by the end of the previous post on Mathematica and Graph Theory, we had managed to take our single string of text and turn it into a graph of ingredients which go well together. Now we actually want to do something useful with this data – ie. come up with some tasty recipes!

We will refer in the following to foodgraph as the graph of all of the food pairings we started with

We will define a recipe very loosely as a set of ingredients all of which go well together. This is clearly far from a real recipe, but it’s a pretty good starting point for one.

Within the graph, a set of ingredients which all go well together form what is known as a connected subgraph – each node is linked to every other node. It’s no good having a recipe where A goes well with B and B goes well with C, but A doesn’t go well with C.…

Thought this might be of interest to some readers. Copy-pasted from here:

The ICTP and the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) announce a joint programme offering fellowships and research/training opportunities to PhD students enrolled in universities in developing countries within areas of ICTP’s scientific and technical competence.

The OFID Postgraduate Fellowships will support 15 doctoral students from developing countries to access ICTP and partner research/training facilities for up to six months per year for three consecutive years. Fellows will carry out  research/training towards their PhD within the Sandwich Training Educational Programme (STEP) scheme at ICTP mentored by co-supervisors at the host institutes in coordination with their supervisors at their home institutes.

Fields of study: any of the ICTP fields of research (including mathematics).

Duration: 3 years; stays of up to 6 months per year

Eligibility: PhD students from developing countries (except OPEC and OFID member countries).
Fellowships are awarded on a merit basis; priority will be given to young researchers from least developed countries.

## Ishango, The Cradle of Mathematics

A quick perusal of the history of mathematics and one quickly gets a sense that sub-Saharan Africa has not made any meaningful contributions to modern mathematics. This ‘absence’ gives a distinct impression that there was very little, if any, mathematics practised in the region during pre-colonial times. But this stands against reason; mathematics in the main was developed by stable societies in order to facilitate trade and agriculture. Over the last millennia, sub-Saharan Africa has been home to numerous enduring civilizations, occupying different regions at different times, and engaged in agriculture and trade at varying extents; from the Nok civilizations of West Africa to the Buganda in the East, from the Great Kongo people of central Africa, to the Mutapa Empire in the South; of all these civilizations, could none have practised mathematics in a form that can be understood today? With these and many other considerations, I set about investigating the history of mathematics in Africa.…

## Paying it Forward

Crypto Giant members together with the founder of Under Twenty Mathematicians programme, Professor Jean Lubuma participated in Mathematics awareness initiative that target high school Learners.  The aim of the project is to identify schools where there is a lack of information about tertiary education opportunities and careers in Mathematics, and to identify the learners which they can groom into pursuing a career in Mathematical Sciences.

In 2014, the group saw a need to pay it forward since they’d gained much from others. Thus they started tutoring classes for calculus and linear algebra to first year students every Saturday morning.  This is where they identified the gap that existed between high school mathematics and first year mathematics. Some students struggled with problem solving approaches, others weren’t even sure why they were there and most concerning was the deteriorating love of Mathematics. Some members of the group also identified with the struggles that the students were facing.…

## Mathematics societies in Africa – very little information on wikipedia

If you go to the Wikipedia page for the list of mathematics societies, you will see that very few societies within Africa are shown. A very quick Google search shows that many countries do indeed have their own mathematics society, so it would be great to try and find out which ones are active. If you know of an active society for a country which is not in the list (currently only South Africa and Gabon are listed as far as I can see), then please write it in the comments, we can collate them, and upon contacting them and asking whether they want to be listed on the wikipedia page, we can put in their details. Please spread the word and let’s see if we can get a few more societies highlighted.

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Our very talented web developer Adam has designed a poster to advertise Mathemafrica.org. If you are in a mathematics department anywhere within Africa, or a highschool where you think this might be of interest, please think about printing the poster out and putting it up. If you would like to translate the poster into another language, we would also very much appreciate your help!

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## Mathematica details of the cooking with mathematics post

Edit: If you want to see the full code, I include everything in this post in the Mathematica file here.

I promised previously that we would go into depth into the graph theory and food calculations, so today we will do just that. This will be Mathematica heavy, so really this is only aimed at those who have played around with the Mathematica programming language.

I’ve been using this language now for over a decade, and while it is not the fastest language on the market for doing numerics-heavy calculations, it is an incredibly versatile language, and for getting code written fast, it’s hard to beat!

I tend to code in what is called a functional programming style (ideal for Mathematica), which doesn’t use loops as you would normally find in a procedural language. Perhaps the most oft used coding syntax you will see below is of the form:

somefunction[#]&/@{el1,el2,el3,el4…}

which takes the elements of a list and passes them one by one into a function.…

## National Conference on Multilingualism in Higher Education

Eventually we want to make this a multilingual blogging platform. Some of the translations of the framework are in, and we hope to have the structure implemented soon. In addition we would love to get people blogging in other languages, and to get some of the current content translated.

The multilingual nature of South Africa is a very important issue in terms of education and there will be a conference focusing on this in August at UNISA. Check it out here.

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## The Varsity Maths Problem

The following post is written by John Webb from The Department of Mathematics and Applied Mathematics at The University of Cape Town. With his permission I include it here as an advert for a book which is discussed at the bottom of the post. Mathemafrica receives no payment for including this text. I hope that in addition to being an advert for the book, this may be a chance for students to discuss some of the problems they see with the transition between school and University here in South Africa for maths students.

Why do so many first-year students fail varsity maths?
Thousands of students across South Africa have started their university careers, and many of them have enrolled for a course in Mathematics. Some will be aiming at a maths major, in particular those who hope to teach mathematics at school level. But far more will be doing maths as a requirement for their degrees in a whole range of areas.…