Life and Style

Johanes Kepler, who was born on 27 December 1771, was born near Stuttgart and made his foray into astronomy after he worked as a maths teacher in Graz, Austria - where he became an associate of Prince Hans Ulrich von Eggenberg.

Julian Bigelow

Computer engineer

Ariel Rubinstein: The logic of beauty is all in this mind

From a speech by the Professor of Economics at Tel Aviv University, given at the London School of Economics

Mahesh Reddy: It takes imagination to be an engineer

From a speech by the Boeing aerospace engineer to a Nasa conference in California

Sanctions to follow eligibility inquiry

International Board prepare to take a hard line over 'grannygate'

The unfinished symmetry

Uncle Petros and Goldbach's Conjecture by Apostolos Doxiadis (Faber & Faber, £9.99, 209pp)

Education Letter: Make teaching attractive

Maureen O'Connor identifies many of the reasons why fewer graduates are attracted to teaching. ("Where have all the teachers gone?" EDUCATION, 2 December).

Mathematical Notes: Zero tolerance and Saracen magic

MATHEMATICIANS HAVE kept the secret to themselves for too long. Theirs is the most beautiful of the arts, and the most accessible, yet bad teaching has made it seem boring at best and more often frightening. How many of us still break out in a cold sweat at the mere sight of an equation?

Leading Article: Ask a silly question

THE ORGANISERS of the National Identity Zone for the Millennium Dome at Greenwich had a problem: precisely what in the world is our British identity? Inevitably, they sought to answer it in typical Nineties fashion - by consulting a focus group. The twist is that their focus group was a rather large one, consisting of 30,000 people. These monitors of our times were asked to name a "person or a thing" which, in their considered view, represented Britishness.

Letter: Role model

Sir: As a mathematician, I applaud David Blunkett's new initiative - using the example of the Bletchley Park codebreakers to motivate school pupils in their mathematical studies, by showing them how mathematical ideas can have the power to change history. I also share Mr Blunkett's evident regard for Alan Turing and his work at Bletchley.

Net Gains: Mad math www.csun.edu/hcmh014/ comics/cc27.html

There are three kinds of mathematicians: those who can count and those who can't. All kinds of sub-cultures flourish on the Web and the world of maths humour is one of its odder blooms.

Education: Working it out together

If children are taught simple numbers while they are in their high chairs, their school maths benefits.

Award for biography of mathematician bigrap

A BIOGRAPHY of a charismatic and eccentric mathematician who lived out of two suitcases for much of his life has won the most prestigious prize in science book publishing.

Enigma code breakers' centre to be a computer theme park

THE CRYPTOLOGISTS who pored over Nazi Enigma codes there may blanch at the prospect but Bletchley Park, the government intelligence centre where their work is said to have shortened the Second World War, seems likely to become a computer technology theme park.

The secret of genius is very hard work

Mathematical Notes
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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us