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By the Numbers: A Lecture Explaining the Mathematical Side of Sudoku

February 25, 2013
Media Contact: Phil Sneiderman
Office: 443-287-9960
Cell: 410-299-7462
prs@jhu.edu

Go on, admit it: you’re addicted to those deliciously frustrating, brain teasing puzzles called Sudoku. Since the Times of London ran its first such puzzle in 2004, Sudoku has become a worldwide craze, with everyone from middle school students to grandmothers sitting down with sharpened pencil and a puzzle several times a week.

Many of the newspapers and magazines that publish Sudoku assure readers that the puzzles have nothing to do with mathematics. But that is simply not true, according to a James Madison University mathematics professor who is coming to Johns Hopkins University in early March to deliver a lecture on that topic.

At 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 5, Jason Rosenhouse will present “Taking Sudoku Seriously” in Room 110 of Hodson Hall on the university’s Homewood campus. The talk will be largely non-technical, and the general public is invited. Admission is free.

“Sudoku has nothing to do with arithmetic, certainly, but it nonetheless has everything to do with mathematics,” explains Rosenhouse, an associate professor of mathematics.

Rosenhouse will defend his statement with examples drawn from logic, combinatorics, number theory and algebra.

“If you enjoy solving Sudoku puzzles, then you might have more of a taste for mathematics than you realize,” Rosenhouse said.

The lecture is hosted by the Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics at the Johns Hopkins University’s Whiting School of Engineering and is part of the school’s Centennial Celebration, commemorating 100 years of engineering at Johns Hopkins.

For information on other Centennial events, go here: http://eng.jhu.edu/wse/page/100-years

For driving directions to the Homewood campus, go here: http://tinyurl.com/394sm5v

A map of the campus is available here: http://tinyurl.com/b9xn5ay

On-campus parking information is here: http://www.parking.jhu.edu/parking_visitors.html

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