President’s Report 2014

The Adams Society remains one of the college’s most active subject societies, hosting a wide range of talks as well as social events.

In Michaelmas, talks included one by Colin Wright on the development of notation for juggling tricks – involving eye-catching demonstrations of all the tricks discussed – and one by Professor Imre Leader, who kindly came up with a new topic  (“Cops and Robbers”) after it emerged there had been a recent Archimedeans talk on a subject similar to his original idea. In Lent, all our speakers were returning Johnians, giving a pleasant introspective feel to the term. Returning from Oxford, Dr. David Conlon gave a talk on arithmetic progressions within the primes, an area he himself has contributed to. Perhaps the highlight of the term came after Dr. Jon Nelson’s talk on statistical modelling, when many distinguished mathematically-inclined Johnians, including another of the term’s speakers, Julian Holstein, dined with the society at Teri-Aki.

The Annual Garden Party was, as usual, a roaring success, again featuring a barbecue (thanks to Henry Bottomley) and attracting even non-mathematicans with the sounds of joyous croquet. The annual cricket match returned after last year’s hiatus, and we recorded a dominant victory, skittling the Trinity Maths Society out for less than half of our 134 runs: credit must go to captain Joe Taylder. Professor Bela Bollobas graced our Annual Dinner as the guest speaker in Lent term, entertaining us with tales of distinguished Johnian mathematicians.

Thanks to the committee for helping ensure the continued good health of the society. Thanks also to all those who have sent letters detailing their time in the society for the archives; I was particularly envious to hear from Douglass Wass of talks from Littlewood and Dirac within his time at the college – hopefully one day those looking back on our talks this year will be as starstruck as I am on hearing of those speakers! Similar letters continue to be very welcome, and can be addressed to the society itself since we now have a pidgeonhole.

Kweku Abraham, President 2013-2014

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