Established on May 10, 1972
by the late Dr. Murray Abramson
then chair of the Mathematics and Computer Science Department
Heather E. Bond-Beeloo
Paul A. Coner
Lisa Nicole Kelliher
Terrence S. Kelleher
Maxwell F. Norris
Jessica M. Salem
Amanda L. Stewart
Click to view Guest Book
Dr. Laura Gross, 2010-2015
Drs. Jacqueline Anderson, Laura Gross, and Annela Kelly, 2013-2014
Dr. Ward Heilman, 2004-2010
Prof. Thomas Moore, 1980-2003
Dr. Murray Abramson, 1972-1979
Π Μ Ε
Sunday, April 19, 2015, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Conant Science Building Room 120
Introduction by Dr. Laura Gross
Ms. Kerrie Pratt, '15 (Math Major)
Dr. Ira Gessel, Theodore W. and Evelyn G. Berenson Professor of Mathematics, Department of Mathematics, Brandeis University
Title: Systems of Numeration
The Romans represented numbers by using different letters for 1, 5, 10, 50, 100, 500, and 1000. The Hindu-Arabic system which we now use is a positional numeration system, in which the position of a digit gives a power of 10 with which it is multiplied. There are many other positional numeration systems. The most well-known is the binary system in which powers of 2 are used instead of powers of 10. I will discuss some additional lesser known positional numeration systems, such as base -2 (negabinary) and balanced ternary, in which digits 0, 1, and -1 are used, and the factorial and Fibonacci numbering systems. There is even an interesting numeration system with an irrational base, the golden ratio.
Ira Gessel attended high school in Dayton, Ohio, and graduated from Harvard University in 1973 with a major in mathematics. He received his Ph.D. in mathematics from MIT in 1977, under the direction of Richard Stanley. He taught at MIT from 1978 to 1984 and has been at Brandeis since 1984. Gessel has served two terms as chair of the mathematics department, and is currently the undergraduate advising head in mathematics. Gessel's research is in enumerative combinatorics, which deals with counting things like permutations and combinations. He has supervised twenty-five Ph.D. students and is a fellow of the American Mathematical Society.
Dr. Murray Abramson, a faculty member from 1966 to 1987. He had chaired the Mathematics and Computer Science Department for years when he passed away in 1987. He held a bachelor's degree from Brooklyn College, a master's from Syracuse University, and a doctorate from Columbia University.
"Quiet and gentle, he was beloved by his students and fellow faculty members. He served the college on the tenure and curriculum committees for many years and was especially interested in the foreign student exchange program. Possessed of an ever-curious mind, he read widely and enjoyed auditing college courses in the areas of art and music." -- from his Memorial and Diorama Presentation held at the Clement C. Maxwell Library on February 6, 1988.
A Development of the rational number System, a programmed text, by Murray Abramson. Boston: Holbrook Press, 1970
First and second level examination of the tenth annual Olympiad High School Prize Competition, by Murray Abramson and Hugo D'Alarat, 1974.
Instructor's manual for a development of the rational number system, 1970
Language of sets - teachers manual. Performance data & Interpretation: Donald A . Cook. Lesson plans: Murray Abramson, 1963
Programming instruction in a development of the rational number system, doctoral dissertation, 1968
(Source: University Archives)
A very realistic portrayal of the third and final day of the Battle of Gettysburg, this diorama was made by Dr. Paul Abramson in memory of his brother Dr. Murray Abramson. The 13,000 tiny figures representing Lee's army of 75,000 men and Meade's amy of 97,000 are meticulously painted by hand and the land features carefully and faithfully put in place.
The diorama is currently located near the balcony of the third floor of the Maxwell Library. Please visit the library's Archives/Special Collections for more information.