The University of Birmingham has a very clever slogan, which it advertises widely, that is “Solving tomorrow’s problems today”. As a mathematician, I immediately thought of the possibilities of replacing these temporal references by arbitrary combinations of “yesterday”, “today” and “tomorrow”. As a slogan for our Government, how about “Solving yesterday’s problems tomorrow”? Or, as a slogan for mathematics, how about “Solving tomorrow’s problems yesterday”?

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This entry was posted on May 8, 2011 at 6:55 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
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May 8, 2011 at 7:14 pm |

On second thoughts, maybe a better description of mathematics is “Solving today’s problems yesterday”? Or is this insufficiently forward-looking?

May 3, 2012 at 5:47 pm |

In fact, I think that “solving some of tomorrow’s or yesterday’s problems today” would be more on cue, since mathematics often solves (some!) problems which either do not exist yet (due to recent advances in theory that have still not been sufficiently understood and hence utilized by science) or problems which we have already met in the past but whose solution eluded us until now because we did not have the necessary (amount of) theory required to shed some new light onto the problem (e.g. at a time when we were still in the Realm of Conjectures). 🙂