An obvious improvement to tennis

So yesterday the Wimbledon tennis tournament was decided. The system for verifying whether the tennis ball is out or not (and hence whether play for the point stops or continues) on the main courts is as follows: The ball lands. The linesperson keeping charge of the line nearest to the landing point of the ball works out whether the ball landed inside or outside the region demarcated by the line.

Mundane magics

I have stumbled across a LessWrong post on the importance of seeing what is real for just how cool it is. It lists such examples as: Vibratory Telepathy. By transmitting invisible vibrations through the very air itself, two users of this ability can share thoughts. As a result, Vibratory Telepaths can form emotional bonds much deeper than those possible to other primates. Psychometric Tracery. By tracing small fine lines on a surface, the Psychometric Tracer can leave impressions of emotions, history, knowledge, even the structure of other spells.

Cambridge vocab - a guide for the mystified

There is an awfully large collection of confusing words you will encounter on first coming to study at Cambridge. You pick them up really quickly in the natural run of things, but I thought perhaps a mini-dictionary might be helpful. The list is alphabetised (if I’m competent enough, anyway) and may, like so many of my writings, grow. Apologies for my crude attempts at pronunciations for the non-obvious words, but it’s very hard to find someone who can read IPA.

Cambridge undergrad maths tips

I wrote this when I was excessively bored during exam term of my first year. It may grow as I get better at working (I’m something of a revisionist). The advice is entirely Cambridge-based; a lot of it probably applies to other places with minor alterations. Most of this comes from personal experience. During a supervision, your supervisor will be writing all the time. As soon as you leave the supervision, mark the sheets that are particularly important in some obvious way (eg.

In which I augment the lexicon

A few dubiously-real words which I think should be more widely used.

CUCaTS Puzzlehunt

At the end of last (that is, Lent 2012-2013) term at Cambridge, I took part in the Cambridge University Computing and Technology Society Puzzlehunt (for some reason, as of this writing, they haven’t yet updated that page for this year’s Puzzlehunt, but last year’s is up there). A short summary: the Puzzlehunt is a treasure hunt around Cambridge, crossed with a whole bunch of online computing-based puzzles. It’s very difficult, and it lasts for twenty-four hours.

First post

Hello all! In the spirit of shouting into an echoing void, this is my first post, testing whether the setup works. Some content will probably turn up soon.

Sylow theorems

A fairly long and winding way through a proof of the three Sylow theorems.