December 31, 2015

Snowflake Symmetry


Window display highlighting a snowflake's hexagonal symmetry. Montreal, Quebec, 2006.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 30, 2015

MAA 100


The Mathematical Association of America (MAA) came into existence 100 years ago today, at a meeting in Columbus, Ohio. The founding members chose the icosahedron as the symbol for the association.


This stained-glass rendering of the MAA icosahedron is in the lobby of the Edgar H. Vaughn Building, named for the grandfather of James Vaughn, president of the Vaughn Foundation, a major contributor to the 1978 fund to purchase the building to serve as MAA headquarters in Washington, D.C.


The Edgar H. Vaughn Building (left) is one of three adjacent historic buildings that constitute the Dolciani Mathematical Center.

Photos by I. Peterson

December 29, 2015

December 28, 2015

Flagpoles


An array of flagpoles. Olympic Harbour, Kingston, Ontario, 1976.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 27, 2015

December 24, 2015

Organ Pipes


Symmetric array of organ pipes for a Reiley organ, built in 1898. Dumbarton United Methodist Church, Washington, D.C.


Photo by I. Peterson

December 23, 2015

Frosted Holly


Holly berries in snow. Washington, D.C., 1982.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 22, 2015

December 21, 2015

Ship Lights


Christmas lights outline a ship's rigging. San Francisco, 1979.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 20, 2015

Crystal Spheres


Crystal spheres for a holiday display. Toronto, 2006.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 19, 2015

Massed Dodecahedra


Window display of clinging dodecahedra. Milan, Italy, 2010.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 18, 2015

December 17, 2015

Fan Plant


Plant with "many-fold" rotational symmetry. Hawaii, 1983.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 16, 2015

Classic Building Symmetry


Asymmetrical lighting of a classic building design with bilateral symmetry. African Union Mission, Wisconsin Avenue N.W., Washington, D.C.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 15, 2015

December 14, 2015

Glitter Path


A golden glitter path arising from the reflection of sunlight from the rippled surface of the water. Lake George, New York, 1980.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 13, 2015

Yellow Plus


Sidewalk warning pad. Chevy Chase, Maryland.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 12, 2015

Parabolic Detection


Parabolic antenna of radio telescope, Green Bank, West Virginia, 1977.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 11, 2015

Daisy Spirals


Spirals at the center of a daisy.


This daisy has 21 white petals and a yellow central disk of tubular florets.


Photos by Kenneth Peterson

December 10, 2015

Quarthead


Quarthead by Bob Sidenberg. Mathematical Art Exhibit, Joint Mathematics Meetings, New Orleans, 2011.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 9, 2015

Gordian Knot Theory


The Gordian Geometric Knot (poster for colloquium on geometric knot theory) by Karl H. Hofmann. Mathematical Art Exhibit, Joint Mathematics Meetings, New Orleans, 2011.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 8, 2015

New Orleans Dawn


Dawn, New Orleans, January 2011

Photo by I. Peterson

December 7, 2015

Drooping Square


North Light by David Von Schlegell, One Oxford Centre, Grant Street, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 6, 2015

Clumping Cheerios


Cheerios floating in milk tend to clump together, thanks to surface tension effects (attracting meniscus effect).

For more about surface tension, see "Climbing a Watery Slope."

Photo by I. Peterson

December 4, 2015

Triangle Tree


Bald cypress tree with a triangular profile, Abilene Christian University, Abilene, Texas.

Photo by I. Peterson

December 3, 2015

Vapor Trail


 A vapor trail begins to fragment in a pattern reflecting prevailing air currents, Shenandoah National Park, Virginia.


Photos by I. Peterson

December 2, 2015

Monticello Octagons


Octagonal compass rose on the ceiling of the Northeast Portico was connected to a weather vane on the roof, Monticello, Charlottesville, Virginia.


View of Monticello, with octagonal dome. The octagon was one of Thomas Jefferson's favorite architectural shapes.

Photos by I. Peterson

December 1, 2015

Meter Array


Array of numbered meters, Cleveland, Ohio.

Photo by I. Peterson