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From an Oxford Hotel: Pi is 4

I’m currently sitting in a hotel in Oxford as tomorrow I am discharging my duties as external examiner for mathematics at Oxford Brookes University. As a postgraduate I regularly visited the city – it was near to Warwick University, my brother lived here for a time and before the birth of Amazon, it was the best place outside of London to find books. And now I’m back to ensure that the maths students of one of its universities are being fairly assessed.

Anyhow, this week is probably the busiest of the year. I’ve got the external examining on Monday and Tuesday, a programme review back in Leeds on Wednesday, plus my Geometry exam (good luck guys!), oral exams for projects on Thursday and Friday, marking the exam at the weekend, and then teaching starts again – need to write my contribution to the new History of Maths course! Oh, and I have to finish my tax return. So if you haven’t received an email reply from me recently, then you know why. My apologies all the same.

Talking of writing course notes, I’m teaching complex analysis again this semester. This, of course, involves teaching about infinite processes/procedures. Should I include the proof that pi is equal to 4, as found at Memebase, and pointed out to me by one of my students:


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