Tag Archives: Science Communication

More Christmas Maths!

OK, so I’ve come out of my long period of digital aestivation and returned to my blog and to various social media platforms.

Rather excitingly, a new version of Hannah and my Christmas maths book is out today! There’s a new chapter about cake, so that’s nice.

There’s also a US version this year, in which we spell things differently and provide extra info on bizarre British festive traditions (though how they get through the day without detonating a small explosive in a cardboard tube and fighting over a pack of mini-screwdrivers, I have no idea).

The UK Edition on Amazon.co.uk

The US Edition on Amazon.com

Here are the two new covers, side by side:

UK Version

US Version


Secretest Santa


In our new book, The Indisputable Existence of Santa Claus, Dr Hannah Fry and I discuss a mathematically superior way to organise your office Secret Santa. However, some people think they have found a flaw in our system…

Never fear though, we have a solution up our sleeves. I just hope you like cutting and sticking…


US Electoral Maths – Seeing the funny side


Back in 2012, I had a go at doing some stand-up comedy on the maths of US presidential elections for Bright Club (a public engagement scheme for academics). Given that the US is currently careering headlong into another election, it seems a good time to post the video, along with a brief discussion of the maths (or possibly an apology for the maths):


New Global Lab – Pinning it Down

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I have produced the May 2016 episode of The Global Lab.

It features a second interview with Sophie Coulombeau (after this one), this time on her academic specialism of eighteenth century literature, specifically the influence of binary classification (e.g. the genus species biological naming convention) on the work of novelist Frances Burney, and why botany was once considered a dangerously racy subject for young ladies. Continue reading

The Interplanetary Lab

SaturneclipseIn the latest episode of the Global Lab podcast, I talk to Dr Nick Attree about his work studying Saturn using photos from NASA’s Cassini orbiter. Nick tells me about a new feature, called a mini-jet, that he has discovered in Saturn’s outermost ring. We also discussed the amazing recent photos of Pluto sent back by the New Horizons spacecraft.

Nick had only handed in the final version of his PhD thesis a few days before the interview, so I think we were the first to officially call him Doctor!

Listen to the episode via the Global Lab page.

Continue reading

Global Lab interview: Mapping in disaster zones

My interview with Matt Pennells is now available on my Global Lab Podcast page.

In the interview, Matt talks about his work with MapAction, a UK based charity that sends volunteers to disaster-hit regions around the world, providing maps for the international agencies that respond to humanitarian catastrophes.

This episode of the podcast also features guerrilla-geographer Daniel Raven-Ellison talking to Martin Zaltz Austwick about turning London into a ‘National Park City’, and materials scientist Anna Ploszajski talking to Rob Levy about hydrogen fuel cells.

Upcoming Global Lab Interview

Just conducted an interview with GIS expert, Matt Pennells, for the Global Lab podcast, on his work for the UK disaster response charity MapAction, a UK charity that provides rapid response mapping services in crisis-hit regions (they are currently working in Vanuatu).

The interview should go out as part the next episode (“In the field”), some time in the next week or two. I will post a link when it is available.

Other episodes of the Global Lab that I have contributed to are collected HERE.

The Global Lab

I’ve added a page that collects together all the episodes of The Global Lab (CASA‘s science communication podcast) that I have been involved with. Listen to my interviews with civil violence mathematician Peter Baudains, urban navigation expert Ed Manley and spatial technology archaeologist Paul Wordsworth (all of whom are Doctors or soon-to-be Doctors).

You can subscribe to The Global Lab on iTunes or download episodes from the Soundcloud page.