5 pm Saturday, Dec. 7, on Big Picture Science: Is algebra the Latin of today?
Imagine a world without algebra. We can hear the sound of school children applauding. What practical use are parametric equations and polynomials, anyway? Even some scholars argue that algebra is the Latin of today, and should be dropped from the mandatory curriculum.
But why stop there? Maybe we should do away with math classes altogether.
An astronomer says he’d be out of work: we can all forget about understanding the origins of the universe, the cycles of the moon and how to communicate with alien life. Also, no math = no cybersecurity + hackers (who have taken math) will have the upper hand.
Also, without mathematics, you’ll laugh < you do now. The Simpsons creator Matt Groening has peppered his animated show with hidden math jokes.
And why mathematics = love.
Andrew Hacker – Professor of political science and mathematics at Queens College, City University of New York. His article, “Is Algebra Necessary?”, appeared in The New York Times in 2012.
Bob Berman – Astronomy editor of The Old Farmer’s Almanac, the author of The Sun’s Heartbeat: And Other Stories from the Life of the Star That Powers Our Planet , and columnist for Astronomy Magazine. His article, “How Math Drives the Universe” is the cover story in the December 2013 issue.
Simon Singh – Science writer, author of The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets
Rob Manning – Flight system chief engineer at the Jet Propulsion Lab, responsible for NASA’s Curiosity rover
Edward Frenkel – Professor of mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, author of Love and Math: The Heart of Hidden Reality . His article, “The Perils of Hacking Math,” is found on the online magazine, Slate.
10 am Dec. 24 & 25 on WILL-AM: Joy, hope and childhood memories overflow as NPR voices, past and present, tell stories on the season.
This two-part program features stories frpm the NPR archives that touch on the meaning of Christmas. David Sedaris, Bailey White, John Henry Faulk--these and other NPR voices, past and present, tell stories of the season. Hosted by Lynn Neary.
7 pm Monday, Dec. 9: Violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg is soloist with the Milwaukee Symphony.
Edo de Waart conducts the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra in Bruch's Violin Concerto No. 1 with Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg as soloist. Also on the program, Dvorak’s “New World” Symphony, Beethoven’s Leonore Overture No. 3 and Jennifer Higdon’s Blue Cathedral.
10 am and 8 pm Thursday, Dec. 26, on WILL-AM: A celebration of Kwanzaa in story and song.
A Season's Griot, public radio's only nationallysyndicated Kwanzaa program, has been hosted for nearly 20 years by acclaimed storyteller Madafo Lloyd Wilson. This annual one-hour special captures the tales and traditions of African American and African peoples.
This year’s program will celebrate family with special guests Elisha Minter, AKA Mother Minter; the show’s poet laureate, Beverly Burnette; and other members of the Season’s Griot family. Familiar and favorite elements of Griot will also be in place with plenty of music in the 2013 edition of A Season's Griot.
1 pm Sunday, Dec. 15: Do dropouts ever get a second chance? What are their lives like 10, 20 or 30 years later?
Every year more than one million students fail to graduate from high school on time. But we rarely explore what happens next. What are these students’ lives like 10, 20, even 40 years after they leave the classroom? Do they ever get a second chance?
Yesterday’s Dropouts is a documentary about the 30 million dropouts in the U.S. and the hundreds of thousands who return to the classroom every year as adults. It’s been years since these students dropped out of school, but the long shadow of their unfinished education still follows them every day.
The program is part of a new documentary series, Breaking Ground with Kavitha Cardoza, dedicated to making the invisible visible.Breaking Ground focuses on specific issues that poor and disenfranchised Americans face, from illiteracy to homelessness to hunger. It is produced by WAMU in Washington, D.C.
Cardoza began her career in 2002 at WUIS-WIPA Public Radio, University of Illinois at Springfield. There she reported and produced features for the Illinois Public Radio network’s 11 member stations, inlcuding WILL-AM.
1 pm Sunday, Dec. 22, on WILL-AM: The best holiday songs from new breakout bands. It's music you'll never hear at the mall!
It's the fifth edition of the wonky holiday tradition from NPR Music. Host Bob Boilen and friends trade holiday cheer and snarky barbs while bringing you the best holiday songs from new and emerging breakout bands. Hear renditions of great holiday music you'll never hear at the mall.
10 am Thursday, Dec. 5, on Focus: The $900 billion piece of legislation has been stalled in Congress. What's the hold-up, and why does it matter?
Farmers have been operating for more than a year now without a farm bill. Since the 2008 bill expired, there’s been an ideological debate surrounding the funding of certain programs in the farm bill, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. There are currently two versions of the bill stalled in Congress, one passed by the Senate and one passed by the House, and if legislators can’t come to a compromise by Jan. 1, farm policy written in the 1940s will take effect. This hour on Focus, we’ll talk about why there’s been such a fight over this year’s farm bill and how that differs from farm bills past.
Help ensure that your public television station is financially strong as 2013 ends and we prepare for 2014.
7:30 pm Friday on WILL-TV: Host Jak Tichenor and his guests, including the House Speaker, discuss negotiations and last-minute efforts to pass the agreement.
After years of debate and political wrangling, the Illinois House and Senate narrowly approved a plan to deal with the state's $100 billion public employee pension problem. On a special edition of Illinois Lawmakers, host Jak Tichenor and his guests discuss the negotiations and last-minute efforts to pass the agreement negotiated by the four legislative leaders and a bipartisan conference committee of Representatives and Senators.
House Speaker Michael Madigan (D) Chicago, describes the shuttle diplomacy role he played in the final days and hours leading up to the vote in an exclusive newsmaker interview on the program. Two of the conference committee members, Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D) Northbrook and Rep. Darlene Senger (R) Naperville provide an in-depth discussion of the agreement's details. Later, Sen. Daniel Biss (D) Evanston, a conference committee member and Sen. David Luechtefeld (R) Okawville, an Assistant Senate Republican Leader, explain the reasons for their votes. Biss was one of 30 senators voting for the bill. Luechtefeld was one of 24 senators voting "no." The House approved the bill 62-53. Union officials representing state workers and retirees say the changes are unconstitutional and are planning a legal challenge.
4 pm today: The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra's Victor Goines talks to Kevin Kelly ahead of their Thursday concert in Bloomington.
The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra was originally formed from members of Wynton Marsalis’s septet and surviving members of the Duke Ellington Orchestra. They’ll play in Bloomington Thursday night, and Kevin Kelly talks with longtime member Victor Goines, a clarinetist and saxophonist, on the Wednesday edition of “Live and Local.” Also on the show, guest host Roger Cooper will preview Charleston Alley Theatre’s production of Miracle on 34th Street with members of the cast.
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