Wrong, But Useful: Episode 44

In this month's episode of Wrong, But Useful, @reflectivemaths1 and I are joined by consultant and lapsed mathematician @freezingsheep2.

We discuss:

  • Mel's career trajectory into 'maths-enabled type things that are not actually maths', although she gets to wave her hands a lot.
  • What you can do with a maths degree, the dangers of 'this can lead you anywhere', and the shift from one perfect answer to something good enough.
  • Construction-based metaheuristics for personnel scheduling problems, and what any of those words mean.
  • Number of the podcast: 15,339,878.
  • Euclidea, revisited, and measuring my dad's banister
  • Dave has a joke.
  • Short bits:
  • Things you don't appreciate until later, and common sense
  • I am currently reading Yes, But Why, by @solvemymaths7
  • Eurovision voting - with mentions to AV, graded voting, and the D'Hondt method.
  • Puzzle feedback: five possible answers to the previous puzzle: (8,3,3), (5,4,3), (15,4,2), (9,5,2) and (7,6,2) Gold stars for @alephthought8, our loyal Australian ambassador Sam Steele, @dragon_dodo9 @chrishazell7210.
  • Dave thinks you shouldn't buy any of my books.
  • Suppose you have a stack of twelve numbered pancakes in an arbitrary order. Insert your spatula below one of the pancakes and flip all of the pancakes above it upside down. What is the most efficient way to get them in order?


Colin is a Weymouth maths tutor, author of several Maths For Dummies books and A-level maths guides. He started Flying Colours Maths in 2008. He lives with an espresso pot and nothing to prove.

  1. Dave Gale in real life []
  2. Mel in real life []
  3. Christian Lawson-Perfect in real life []
  4. Jo Morgan in real life []
  5. Katie Steckles in real life []
  6. Ben Sparks in real life []
  7. Ed Southall in real life []
  8. Chris Hellings in real life []
  9. Dominika Vasilkova in real life []
  10. Chris Hazell in real life []


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sign up for the Sum Comfort newsletter and get a free e-book of mathematical quotations.

No spam ever, obviously.

Where do you teach?

I teach in my home in Abbotsbury Road, Weymouth.

It's a 15-minute walk from Weymouth station, and it's on bus routes 3, 8 and X53. On-road parking is available nearby.

On twitter