OpenLab Assignment 7: Tell me about infinity

1.  Heads up: your photo MUST be taken by you (no using photos from the internet or elsewhere).
2.  These instructions are “stuck” to the top of this page.  When you create your post, it will appear below this.
3.  Extra credit — see the bottom of these instructions for extra credit. 

We are embarking on a part of the course that deals with infinity — that is, with sequences (infinite lists of numbers) and series (infinite sums of numbers).  We are studying this idea in a rigorous mathematical way, but it is a concept that is important in many non-mathematical areas – religion, philosophy, art, and many more.  Almost every child, from shortly after they learn to count, has some idea of infinity.

Assignment (due Tuesday, April 17th): Create a new blog post about one (or more)  of the topics below. Creating a new blog post allows you more flexibility than simply leaving a comment.  You have the ability to edit your work after you submit it, and to include photos and other media.  It also allows you to contribute to the public content of our course website.  Detailed instructions on creating a new blog post can be found here (see “Creating a Post” in the middle of the first page). You should create a new blog post including the following:

  1. The title should include the word “Infinity” and also your name.
  2. Your post should consist of two to three paragraphs in response to the topic (or topics) you choose below.
  3. You must take a photo that illustrates the idea of infinity in some way, and include the photo in your post (cell phone cameras are fine!). For information on including a photo in your post, see page 10 of the instructions.
  4. Your post should also explain the photo – what is the connection to infinity? Creative connections are just fine.
  5. Under tags, enter “infinity, assignment 7”

Topics. Choose either ONE or TWO of the following topics.

  1. What is infinity?  Explain in your own words.
  2. Who first introduced you to the idea of infinity? How old were you?  How did this new idea make you feel?
  3. Describe either a conversation you had about infinity or an argument you had about infinity. Give us the details!
  4. Find a reference to infinity in popular culture (a song, a movie, a product, a book, etc.).  What does infinity mean in this context?  Does is mean the same thing that it means in mathematics? Explain. (Include a link to the pop culture item in your post).
  5. Is infinity an important idea in your religion?  Do you think that infinity in a religious setting refers to the same idea as infinity in mathematics? Why or why not? (Alternative: replace “religion” with “philosophy” in this topic)

Extra Credit.  For extra credit, leave a comment on someone else’s post.  Does it remind you of something from your own experience?  Do you agree or disagree?  Find something to say about it!

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7 Responses to OpenLab Assignment 7: Tell me about infinity

  1. Tony Mei says:

    is it okay if i created a montage of stuff from the internet? Or do I really need to take a picture with my camera?

    • Jonas Reitz says:

      You really have to take it yourself! BUT, if you’d like to edit it, photoshop it, or combine it with other photos (that you did not take) that’s okay — as long as it has some content created originally by you.
      -Mr. Reitz

  2. tonymei999 says:

    is it okay if I created a montage of photos over the internet or do I need to take a picture?

  3. jeffreym says:

    Hi prof

    I was out of the country on an emergency visit to see my dad. I was trying to complete the infinity assignment, I published my infinity blog but I don’t see it on the website. I’m not sure if the Internet connection was bad in the country or if there was some other technical Problem. Please let me know if it showed up or what I need to do differently.

    Jeffrey Mongal

    Thank you for your time prof.

    • Jonas Reitz says:

      Hi Jeffrey,

      Your post is there, but it has not yet been published. Do this: Go to the “site admin”, click “Posts” on the left-hand menu, and then look for your post in the list. Click on it, and then look for the button that says “Publish” (I think you must have used the similar button “Save Draft” instead). This should make it appear on the site.

      Let me know if you have trouble,
      Mr. Reitz

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