Can I borrow the math geeks' brains for a minute?

<p>It's Hell Week at my college right now and that means that the freshmen hellees have to do (almost) anything that their sophomore heller tells them to. Unfortunately I am not taking a single class with freshmen this year, so I thought I would have a freshman interrupt my math classes.</p>

<p>I having a hard time coming up with a good task for my Graduate Algebraic Topology class. It's a small class (4 students) and the professor has a great sense of humor. Pretty much anything from reading a poem to proposing to the professor is appropriate as long as it allows the professor to teach at least for a little bit. </p>

<p>Can anyone think of a good assignment that has something to do with topology? </p>

<p>A few examples from other classes: In quantum physics last year, we had a Schroedinger's cat who alternated between purring around the professor, playing with a piece of string in the corner, chasing a human mouse and lying dead on the floor. In philosophy, the freshmen didn't believe in the existence of chairs. In economics, a few seconds after the professor had entered the room a student in the front row started sniffing and said (very loudly), "Have you been drinking?"</p>

<p>He could perform a rendition of "We're a finite simple group of order 2" , that could just be cruel... Utube it.</p>

<p>i second orangelights's opinion. or since its algebraic topology maybe you could have him come in with a donut and a thing of coffee, have him pour the coffee on the donut then say "oh no, i thought this was a coffee mug," and then walk out.</p>

<p>Just in case someone's curious, here's what I have decided. I found a second freshman and now we will have a competition in untying knots. The catch: some of the knots we will give them will <em>not</em> be unknots, so it will be impossible for them to actually unknot them. The professor who suggested this pointed out that my topology professor (a knot theorist) will be in agony watching the freshmen trying to accomplish the impossible. Should be fun :D</p>

<p>That sounds pretty funny, actually :)</p>

<p>I was going to suggest tying everyone together in a sequence, pasting dels on their shirts (i.e. a chain complex) and come in wizard-of-oz style saying "there's no place like homology!"</p>

<p>But your idea's better, anways :)</p>

<p>Side note, how does anyone take algebraic topology as a sophomore!?!</p>

<p>I wasn't even the only sophomore in my algebraic topology class...</p>

<p>There's another option that goes in a whole different direction. Apparently some grad students last year decided to call the universal cover of two spheres identified at their poles as the "infinite anal bead" sequence on their homework (at least I think that's the right object with that universal cover).</p>

<p>I guess it makes sense. Now that I think about it, there was a sophomore in my (grad) mathematical logic class...wiped the floor with most of the grad students, too.</p>

<p>I suppose could have probably taken grad courses around that time, but I took a lot of out-of-major stuff instead (mostly math).</p>

<p>Doesn't seem as prevalent in other fields, either. I've seen a lot of seniors taking EE grad classes, but sophomores & juniors tend to stay away. I can't imagine any of them having the time to take a grad class.</p>

Side note, how does anyone take algebraic topology as a sophomore!?!


You look at the course catalog and go like, "Hmm.... I could take DiffEQ but I never really liked calculus... Or I could take complex analysis, but it meets way too early in the morning... Or I could take another topology class with this really awesome professor!"</p>