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I have just finished the first draft of my blog book for 2009, under the title of “An epsilon of room: pages from year three of a mathematical blog“.  It largely follows the format of my previous two blog books, “Structure and Randomness” and “Poincaré’s legacies“.

There is still some amount of work to be done on the texts; for instance, I need to create an index (which I had neglected to do in the previous two books in the series), and will probably end up splitting the book into two volumes (as was done for “Poincaré’s legacies”).

As always, any feedback or comments are very welcome.

  1. In a previous post, I noted John Baez’s thread discussing his incipient article for the Notices of the AMS, entitled “What do mathematicians need to know about blogging?”.  John has now completed an initial draft of his article and is welcoming comments on it here. [Update, Oct 2: the article has now been submitted, incorporating much of the feedback.]
  2. In another previous post, I talked about the forthcoming Google Wave platform being developed currently by Google, and its potential usefulness for online mathematical collaborative projects, such as the polymath projects.  My brother, who is one of the developers for this project, has just informed me that there are now a limited number of invites available to others who would like to develop specific Wave extensions or other projects (see for instance his own blog post, aimed at the GNOME community).  As I understand it, the Wave platform is not yet ready for general use, so these invites would be intended for technical developers (or preferably, a group of developers) who would be working on specific projects.  (For instance, I understand that there is already a preliminary extension for encoding LaTeX in a Wave, but it could be developed further.)  If any readers are interested, one can request an invite directly from the Google Wave page, or I can forward requests to my brother.  [At some point, I may ask for help in trying to build a Wave platform for the next generation of Polymath projects, but this will probably not occur for several months yet, due to a large number of other things on my plate (including existing Polymath projects).]

I’ll be in Australia for the next month or so, giving my share of the Clay-Mahler lectures at various institutions in the country.  My first lecture is next Monday at Melbourne University, entitled “Mathematical research and the internet“.  This public lecture discusses how various internet technologies (such as blogging) are beginning to transform the way mathematicians do research.

In the spirit of that article, I have decided to upload an advance copy of the talk here, and would welcome any comments or feedback (I still have a little bit of time to revise the article).   [NB: the PDF file is about 5MB in size; the original Powerpoint presentation was 10MB!]

[Update, August 31: the talk has been updated in view of feedback from this blog and elsewhere.  For comparison, the older version of the talk can be found here.]

[Update, Sep 4: Video of the talk and other information is available here.]