Whenever a student wonders why linear algebra, matrices, and vectors are important, the response from teachers usually sounds like this:
“Matrices are important because they are used everywhere, such as in smartphone technology, GPS, quantum mechanics, robotics, statistics, artificial intelligence, etc.”
This response is true, but I find it unsatisfying and incomplete. This line of reasoning is inductive, but I want something deductive. You could list hundreds of practical uses for linear algebra, but no matter how long you make that list you won’t be able to unravel the true nature of these mysterious number structures.
After thinking about and…
“And so you ask, ‘What about the innocent bystanders?’ But we are in a time of revolution. If you are a bystander, you are not innocent.” - Abbie Hoffman
I imagine this quote will either stir discomfort or invoke agreement, depending on who is reading. Topics such as racism and climate change are intimidating to talk about, which leads some people to “stay away from politics.” The activist side of me wants to argue back at those people and say something that follows the sentiment of “Silence drives injustice. Complacency is complicity. Apathy assists oppressors.” and etc.
However, avoiding politics…
Between June and December of 2020, I read The Autobiography of Malcolm X, which I highly recommend. Understanding his life is crucial to understanding the history of American racism, a life that is unfortunately dismissed as trivial in our current curriculums.
As I was reading, I wrote a small reflection essay for every chapter, focusing on how that chapter was relevant to our conversations today. Later, I posted the essays on Instagram. Below is a compilation of all of those essays.
The book starts off with a dark and intense chapter about Malcolm’s life as a child. There were many…
Effective Eccentric Eclectic Electrical Engineer