Sunday, November 05, 2006

Math in German

For the last week, I've tried going to a few seminars in the math dept. The first one that I showed up for was in German. I didn't realise that it was not in English and after it started it was too rude to get up and leave. What struck me though was how well organized the lecture was. Not just the first one, almost all of them. Even if they're in German, they were fairly comprehensible especially as all the formulae were written very clearly. What helps a lot is the pauses in the middle of the lecture. Too often, math lectures go at a pace which is too fast for almost everyone. Since the lecturer has to take a wet mop kind of thing, then dry it with a windscreen wiper thingie, it takes up a fair amount of time. But that's the ideal point to ask questions, rather than interrupt the speaker. It's been interesting observing how clear and precise most of the lectures have been. I still have a hard time understanding them, but I seem to be getting the hang of it. Anyway, since a lot of the math terms one uses originated in German, there's quite a bit of overlap in the terminology.

And I've also learnt the German equivalent for "I don't know", "Good question" and "Let me think about it". Incredibly useful terms for any lecturer.


Hans said...

"woat, loss mi nochdenkn."

incredibly useful! not only for lecturers...

bandafbab said...


Anonymous said...

Hey Afty,
When are you moving to Paris? A friend of mine is a student of JT so i thought i'd introduce you guys before you get there.
Can you send me an email - think i've lost your address.