Where to begin?
It is easy to ask, but perhaps more complicated to answer. Years ago at a school reunion I mentioned to my A Level Physics teacher that I had never needed to use Boyles’ Law during my 20+ year career. This generated raucous laughter from the both of us. However, I could say the same about trying to find the area under a curve. Integration was difficult for me to learn and I would loved to have been able to use it in the real world, but my technology career took me in a different direction and theory never became a reality for me.
It’s all about the application.
For me, the best Mathematics deal with the areas where I can see a real world application. I know that sentence will infuriate those into to their theories who love their ‘Pure Maths’, speculations and proofs, but for me, there is no point in having tools in your kit bag unless you can use them in the real world. It’s just how I’m programmed I suppose.
So, if I am to return to the world of Mathematics, I have to find practical applications, but also have them pitched at my current skill level which is so much lower than the 80s.
After a short review of what is currently out there, I’ve read an applied mathematics book published by Stamford and got lost very, very quickly. I’ve decided that the UK A level syllabus is the level I need to pitch at.
So that is where I will begin.
As I type a memory has just landed in my brain about my first lesson, or perhaps that should be observation relating to calculus, specifically differentiation. The teacher was talking at great lengths about dee-why by dee-ex and I got an image in my mind about a comedian putting on a foreign accent. I nearly got busted in class, but managed to stifle my laughter at the thought.