E.O. Wilson says you can be successful as a scientist without math. Well, maybe. But, you can improve your chances of success if you take a breath, let go of your fear of math, and take some time to learn it. I think it is really quite wonderful. Oh, and if you aren’t sure about where to start, there just happens to be a workshop for Mathematics in Biology. Yes, yes, go sign up!!

** 2013 Workshop for Young Researchers in Mathematical Biology (WYRMB)**

**August 26 - 29, 2013**

Application deadline: **May 1, 2013**

The workshop is intended to broaden the scientific perspective of young researchers (primarily junior faculty, postdocs, and senior graduate students) in mathematical biology and to encourage interactions with other scientists.

Workshop activities include plenary talks and poster sessions, as well as group discussions on issues relevant to mathematical biologists. Several abstracts will be chosen for short talks as well as poster presentations. Limited funding is available on a competitive basis.

We
cordially invite young mathematical biologists to participate. For full
consideration, please apply by May 1, 2013. To apply, click this link** ****http://www.mbi.osu.edu/wyrmb/wyrmb2013.html**

####
Plenary Speakers

Lisa Fauci, Tulane University

Kresimir Josic, University of Houston

Claudia Neuhauser, University of Minnesota

Sebastian Schreiber, UC Davis

Arthur Sherman, Laboratory of Biological Modeling, NIDDK, NIH

John Tyson, Virginia Tech

Lani Wu, Southwestern University

I think the operative phrase is supposed to be

“Early Career”rather than“Young”. In the Federally-funded world we don’t want any hint of age discrimination. That’s probably what you meant, anyway. While I was in graduate school about 1/4 of the grad students were “non-traditional”, and hence not in their 20s. (But we never asked!) Check with your Admins.Looks like a great workshop! In the atmospheric sciences there are a number of us who wished we had time for a solid course in Statistics. I imagine that Stats would be quite valuable in Biology.

I’ve never understood why math is in any way related to investigating and discovery and invention relative to nature. math is just a language of order in the universe and really just a shadow of reality. It does not help origin subjects as being a thing of order it presumes constancy. Therefore it doesn’t make a case for evolution where the critic questions that biology is constabnt as opposed to manipulated by a creator or other mechanisms.

Thanks for pointing this out. It isn’t my workshop. I’m just publicizing it. I agree that it would have been better to call it “Early Career”.

I’m not so much a mathematical biologist, as a math student with an interest in the subject, but no formal study in biology beyond the freshman course. Is there anything I could get out of this, or is it more oriented toward teaching math to biologists?

Also, to Mr. Byers: the best example I can think of for the importance of math to the sciences is Noether’s deep result regarding the relationship between invariances (e.g., the laws of physics don’t change with time or place), and conservation laws. You can learn there’s a relationship, but it takes a familiarity with the calculus of variations to really understand what’s going on there.

I am not organizing, so I’ll recommend you email the organizing committee if you want an accurate answer. But, from their mission:

http://www.mbi.osu.edu/about/mission.html

It seems like mathematicians who want to develop for biology are part of their target group. I’d say it seems like one of the more mathematician-friendly environments as a first-step into biology.

The guy you addressed that to seems to think that the various sciences are actually separate from each other (or at least that biology is somehow independent of the others; it’s as if he doesn’t know that both organisms and rocks are made of atoms and molecules).

He routinely ignores the fact that they each describe aspects of the same universe, and that the described objects interact, often strongly, with each other. (Objects in nature simply have no respect for human classification schemes.)

One could point out that mathematics can be used whenever the subject matter contains regularities that can be measured or counted, but he’d probably ignore that, too.

Henry

The math would still just be shadowing the reality. If the reality was different, say from a act of God, the math would not be resistant to the act. I’m diminishing the importance of math relative to , it seems as I read, the high status unrelated science subjects give it. I don’t see how its very important at all in most things dealing with studying nature. Just this and that. It doesn’t help evolutionary biology in its claims.

You don’t know any math, do you.

Fixed for you, deary.

I agree OBJECTS in nature being classified by man are innately unlikely to be accurate. The bible says life comes just from Gods spirit suddenly breathing on what was nothing. The rest also some equation.

Yes measuring or counting is the essence of math and so can be applied to everything. Yet i don’t see it contributes anything to most things suudied. Counting fleas on the dog doesn’t help rid the dog of the fleas or make any difference.

The various subjects like biology and geology are separate from each other and can’t be used as evidence for conclusions about each other. Just in a secondary way. Geology is the foundation for the claims of biological evidence for the truth of evolution. A whoopps in methodology accuracy of too long a time now.

You don’t know any math, do you.

Actually, yes it does.

Assuming you want to actually know

whythe dog has fleas,howto get rid of the fleas, indeed,ifthe even has fleas in the first place, then having a count of the fleas involved would tell you a lot.If you had several data points it would tell you where the dog was getting his fleas. If he consistently comes back from the neighbors yard with a big new load of fleas you know you have to keep him away form the neighbors dog.

having some counts would tell you which flea medications were effective and which were not.

Seasonal variation in the numbers might reveal a lot about the life cycle of fleas and remove the need to dose your dog with flea-killing potions or keeping him inside in the dormant season.

Even

absenceof evidence is probative. If you findnofleas on your dog but he still still scratches it’s a good indication that some other potentially serious skin problem is at hand.Measuring is pretty much the basis of

allknowledge Byers, not just math. The fact that your side won’t actuallydoany measuring has nothing to do with it’s “contributions”, and pretty much everything to do with the fact that you don’t like where the measurements lead.Lots of hypotheses in science make predictions about the frequency of something, or the percentage of some component of something else. Confirming or dis-confirming such predictions is then essential to that science, and requires measuring (or at least counting) the relevant quantities. This includes biology. Yeah, I know that stuff in biology is often much more contingent on environment than is stuff in chemistry or physics, and experiments in chemistry and physics can often be simplified so as to depend on only one or a few variables, and that’s hard to do in biology. (Chemistry is of course a somewhat more elementary subject than is biology.)

Henry

It is one of the habits of the mathematically illiterate to deny the importance or usefulness of mathematics. I did it myself, when introduced to ordinary flat trigonometry. Having understood that the sine of an angle of a plane right triangle was the ratio of the opposite side of that triangle over its hypotenuse, I was asked to use the sine of an angle greater than ninety degrees. I absolutely brainfroze and balked, because it was obvious that there could be no such thing. No plane right triangle could contain a second ninety degree angle. I protested that there was no point in theoretical speculation about things that could not possibly exist, according to the very same theorems about triangles that I had learned with such labour in elementary school.

My protests were, of course, ignored. I flunked, because I simply couldn’t see what on Earth the man was going on about, but that in any case the idea was utterly pointless and contrary to reality, and I wasn’t going to waste my time with it.

Even irrational numbers weren’t such a problem, because I could see that

piwas a real ratio, although I snickered quietly to myself about how the mathematicians could never get it right. Some time later, I read a popular article about the square roots of minus numbers, and came to the conclusion that the whole structure of number theory was false. It was based on an obviously false premise - ie that there is such a thing as number, other than an adjectival property of real objects. That is, negative numbers do not actually exist at all, and are nothing more than the fevered speculations of people who didn’t actually have anything real to do, and that their square roots are the same, but compounded to a ridiculous degree.But that’s a mathematical blind spot I have. I know it’s there, and I know it’s a disability. Byers seems to be proud of his, and thinks it’s an advantage.

Bridges, skyscrapers, spacecraft - and bacteria, plants, animals and everything else is made of the same stuff, atoms. That’s why math works, all the time. If your math is right, the answers are right!

But you cant explain that to a religoius fundamentalist that place his interpretation and faith in the bible above reason and facts. The subject of Noah and the flood was recently debated in another thread here, and Stevaroni said here something very much along the same lines I have been thinking for many years.

The fact that fundamentalists ignore such obvious evidence of the absurdity of the Noah flood myth boggles my mind - and is a powerful demonstration of how fundamentalism atrophies the mind.

Thanks Robert, for demonstrating the mindset of the dark ages, the attitude that brought us witch hunts and inquisitions, the condescension that gets the kid on his way to the science fair with his project beat up by bullies. Keep spouting off Robert, keep displaying your ignorance. We love it when you expose your dark ignorant underbelly. The rest also some equation indeed.

Here is a hint for you Robert. Don’t ever go to a doctor, they use mathematicals all of the time. Don’t take any drugs or get any operations, don’t buy any insurance or use any currency, those evil demographiers, epidemiologists and economists are just doing the devils work with all their fancy equations and cipherin. Don’t use a car or a go into a large building, them nasty equationses is the only thing keeping you from certain deathness. Course the rest of usins is goin to get along just fine, what with all the equatedness takin place. But don’t worry, you can always try to throw your shoes into the machine and bring modern civilization to a screeching halt. Good luck with that. I’ll see you when i visit the Amish, at least they doen’t use the internets like a hypocitical.

You are jumping at conclusions, got crabs and can’t sit still?

So you don’t think there is any connection between, say, biology and astronomy?

Skin cancer = biology.

Sun = astronomy.

Sunshine = photons = physics

There is just one world, Robert, just one world, one Earth. Do you really think you know better than many, many millions of scientists and educated people from all over the world? How can you know before you have studied a subject? Should engineers study the bible instead of engineering and math?

Go here: FOSSILS and read it all, all, I tell you!

Smart people always have done their best to understand the world in which we live. You, on the other hand, are doing your best to deny anything that conflicts with your particular faith. People like you are a disgrace to any religion. It is a fact that you know and understand nothing of our world.

Here is a taste:

Here is a question for you Robert. How did Mendel discover the basic principles of inheritance? Did he use any math? How did Morgan verify and extend the principles that Mendel discovered? Did he use any math? How is modern genetic counseling done? Do they use any math?

No wonder this guy claims that genetics is atomic and unproven! Too bad for him the rest of the world knows better.

Some more questions for you Robert. Do you balance your checkbook? Do you figure out your taxes? Do you calculate a tip for the waiter at a restaurant? How do you determine how many miles per gallon your car gets? How do you know how many square feet of carpet you will need to cover the living room floor? If a quarter pounder and a third pound hamburger are the same price, which one is the better buy? If two trains leave the station at the same time, which one are you going to get on? How many bones are there is a gallon of ice cream?

See Robert, the entire world revolves around mathematics. It is virtually impossible not to know this and survive in modern society. So which is it Robert? Still sticking to your story? Still claim that maths is not important because you is a biologicals? Or are you willing to admit that you are just spouting ignorant nonsense again?

As for your other bullshit about the different areas of science, once you have shown that you know the first thing about any science, maybe someone will care about your opinion. Of course, if you can’t do any math, you are just as likely to pass any science course as you are to pass an english course now aren’t you?

There’s exactly one interesting thing about Robert Byers.

It’s interesting that the basic ideas he expresses are no stupider than the same ideas, when expressed in a more slick way, by a professional science denier.

Byers will simply say anything to contradict the theory of evolution. One minute he defends some goofy mathematical function by Dembski. The next minute, faced with legitimate applications of math, he denies that math can be useful. Self-contradiction is no problem, as long as each individual statement is also seen as contradicting real science.

He differs from other ID/creationists only in grammar and spelling.

Agreed. He argued for months that fossils were nonbiological and could not be used to draw conclusions about the history of life. Then he claimed that the fossil record supported the biblical flood story! Amazing. He had his cake, ate it, barfed it up and then denied that there was ever any cake!

Objection! Council cites facts not in evidence, you Honor.

As I wrote it I wondered if someone would challenge the flea thing. Counting fleas on the dog might matter indeed. Yet I would still say few discoveries or inventions ever needed any math help.

Measuring isn’t the basis of most knowledge. Its a very minor thing and very unrelated to most of biology.

You don’t know any math, do you.

Predictions or not measuring/counting is very unrelated to hypothesis and rarely relevant to testing hypothesis. The glory of advanced math I see as unrelated to scientific discovery/invention. Just as math is unrelated to shooting a shower of arrows at Crecy. Even if basic math was needed to collect and nurse the amount of arrows. My point is that subjects are self contained in their nature as to describing and discovery in them. One can of done most great advances in science without any knowledge or need of math. No not making bridges but figuring out how to shift weight on bridges even needed no math insight.

You don’t know any math, do you.

I understand this was a math guy and he would say that. he’s wrong. he’s not understanding non math advances.

Science is just another word for figuring out things and figuring out how to manipulate things to make other things. ideas or hypothesis is the origin of this advancement and no math models are relevant. Math in the context of science is more then calculating how many people would sink the rowboat. What did VON even contribute to science other then something related to math? What’s his patents? to be successful in scientific achievement one should avoid any dealings with math beyond high school. Teaching science interested kids about math is like teaching middle ages kids latin. Just a interference with sharp thinking.

You’re the kind of guy, Robert Byers, who has to unzip to count to eleven.

Here is a question for you Robert. How did Mendel discover the basic principles of inheritance? Did he use any math? How did Morgan verify and extend the principles that Mendel discovered? Did he use any math? How is modern genetic counseling done? Do they use any math?

How about Einstein? DId he use any mathematical formulas? Were his ideas tested? Was any math used to test them?

What about Hardy Weinberg? Do you even know who they were? Did they use any math?

What about Watson and Crick?

How about proving the earth is round? Any math involved in that one?

Newton and gravity? Please describe how gravity affects an object without using any math.

How about this, how about if you just explain one real scientific theory in your own words? Can you do that? Cause if you can’t, then any claims you make about any scientific theories are just so much bullshit. BUt then, we already know that don’t we Robert.

ANd no one interfered with your “sharp thinking” did they Robert? Good to know.

I’d like to play poker with you some time. I think the results would be very entertaining.

What a laughable ignoramus you are, Robert Byers.

You don’t even know who John von Neumann

was.Please remember that you are talking at an Idiot For Jesus who, as an alleged Canadian, thinks that the 1

^{st}Amendment of the US Constitution forbids the teaching of evolution in science class, but permits the teaching of Young Earth Creationism in science classes due to nonsense about “origins,” and who thinks that it should be a crime against humanity to use C.E. and B.C.E. instead of A.D. and B.C.Robert Byers needs direction to know which end of a mop to push.

Earth sucks?

Math provides a way of describing relationships among objects and sets of objects, that can’t be done without it.

Not that this needs to be said to anybody with sense, but different subjects are

not“self contained” when they are describing various aspects of the same universe, or same world if the subjects in question are localized to this planet. Chemistry uses physics. Biology uses both of these. Geology uses all of those. Astronomy uses physics and chemistry. Cosmology uses those three. Ecology uses nearly all of them (possible exception of cosmology). All of them use math.Certainly each of them has details that the others don’t concern themselves with. Quantum physics can usually be ignored when studying things at larger scales, but the basic principles are still there. Relativity can usually be ignore when studying things at small scales, but here too the basic principles are still there. Biology can be usually be ignored when studying astronomy, but might have to be considered when looking at spectra from other planets.

On the other hand, science deniers use cosmetology, which is the art of making stuff up.

Henry

von Neumann patents:

1946 with Klaus Fuchs, ““Improvement in Methods and Means for Utilizing Nuclear Energy”

1954 “Non-Linear Capacitance or Inductance Switching, Amplifying, and Memory Organs”

Fine. I suspect his contribution was just math stuff. However if he did other things then that would be considered part of whats called discovery and invention. Still any idea of his that math is important ro discovery or invention is just plain misunderstanding things and I suspect just an attempt to make his study essential to science. Largely math is as relevant as pencils. Needed but not the stuff of achievement and advancement. Darwin was wrong about his ideas but math was irrelevant or almost to his ideas. Math as a human idea for description of things I mean.

Von Neumann arguably could have patented his invention of digital computer architecture, but I guess not his work on the hydrogen bomb or quantum mechanics. He also devised the first self-replicating automaton and about a million other works of genius.

You’re stupidly wrong, and an ignoramus to boot. You don’t know any math. You don’t know any science. You’re just a bag of deluded hot air.

You’re ridiculous, Robert Byers. Go back to your igloo.

Thanks for answering my questions Robert. Everyone can see that you are a delusional, ignorant, dishonest SOB who couldn’t understand an equation if it bit you on the ass. If there is any justice at all in this world you will have to pay for your ignorance and arrogance in a thousand different ways, most of which you won’t even recognize.

Poor G. H. Hardy. After we learned about Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium in Coursera’s Intro to Genetics and Evolution, the prof pointed out that Hardy lamented that he had never produced anything useful!

Von Neumann’s claim to being the originator of the stored program digital computer is a little shaky; he gets the credit because he wrote the Report. Eckert and Mauchly actually did a lot of the work.

The original conception of the monoliths in “2001: A Space Odyssey” was derived from von Neumann’s idea of self-replicating machines. His Wiki page lists a raft of areas in mathematics and physics that he contributed to.

And it was von Neumann who pointed out to Claude Shannon that one of the latter’s equations was mathematically similar to one in Thermodynamics; which is why we have the concept in information theory that is referred to as “entropy”. So Granville Sewell and William Dembski and the LCCSI (and all the rest of it) are von Neumann’s fault.

As I heard it, Hardy was proud of mathematics producing non-useful things, and was sort of embarrassed by the Hardy-Weinberg Equation (particularly because the mathematics in it was so simple). According to this view, laments for Hardy are due because of the uses of number theory in cryptography, because Hardy celebrated the uselessness of number theory.

Does Current Biology have the Misfortune of Owning an Unreliable Clock? http://scienceandscientist.org/Darw[…]liable-clock

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