Home Again




After a lengthy trip that involved not just planes and trains, but automobiles as well, I made it back from San Francisco in one piece. Yay! The conference was a big success, both mathematically and socially. Saw lots of old friends, which is, after all, the point of the conference, and also hopefully made some new ones.

As the sign says, this was the 2010 Joint Mathematics Meetings. The “Joint” refers to the joint sponsorship between the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical Association of America. No Monty Python jokes, please. Roughly speaking, the AMS deals with the research side of the profession, while the MAA does the educational side.

Of course, one of the most interesting parts of the conference is the exhibit center. Very cool displays of mathematical art, new mathematical software, and, of course, representatives from all of the major (and some not so major) publishers of math books. I was particularly keen on the Oxford University Press booth, because of displays like this:




Why is there only one copy of my book in front of the sign? Because the other nineteen copies they brought with them had all sold by the time I took the picture! Whoo hoo! And that last copy had sold too, but they don't let you walk away with the last copy until the end of the conference.

I also found time to wander over to Oakland to visit the National Center for Science Education.




From left to right, that's Eugenie Scott, Me, Glenn Branch and Josh Rosenau. Spent a pleasant afternoon with them. Genie and Josh I have met before, but Glenn has been a long-time e-pen-pal. It was also nice to meet the rest of the gang.

And since today is the MLK holiday, and I have no classes on Tuesdays this term, I even have plenty of time to recover before having to face the students again.

If you are looking for a good place to eat in San Francisco, I recommend Tadich Grill. They have now spoiled (Manhattan) clam chowder for me, since it is inconceivable that I shall find a better version of it than theirs. On the other hand, if my experience is typical, you really can not go too far wrong with any decent looking restaurant. I didn't have a bad meal during the entire trip!

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Thanks for the update.

By NewEnglandBob (not verified) on 19 Jan 2010 #permalink

But did the chowder have thyme floating on top? As far as Iâm concerned, if thereâs no thyme, itâs not real. But at least itâs easier to get decent Manhattan chowder than to get decent New England: almost every place thickens it with flour, and that is Not Genuine.

I bought one of those copies. I was hoping to run into you so that you could sign it for me. I enjoyed reading it in my spare time in SF.

Jonathan Lubin -

Alas, it did not have thyme floating on top. But it was thick, and spicy, and everything in it tasted really fresh. I agree with you about the relative merits of Manhattan vs. New England Clam Chowder, though. But that is mostly because I generally prefer tomato-based soups to cream-based.

Tom -

Thanks for buying the book! Sorry I didn't have a chance to meet you, but then, there is always next year in New Orleans.