Using my A to Z Archives: Ansatz


I want to cut down on the amount of hard new writing I’m doing, at least until I feel at ease with the All 2020 A-to-Z and maybe anything in 2020 at all. But I also want to not disappear into the void except for a weekly appearance. This may be strange since some of the blogs I like best publish once a month or even more rarely, but I don’t have their confidence. Please bear with me as I bring some older posts to attention, then.

The first I want to highlight is the first A-to-Z post I ever did, a million years ago. The summer 2015 sequence started with “ansatz”, and it was the start of my learning a lot. The most important thing was learning that a term I’d picked up in grad school was, at least, idiosyncratic. I don’t know how small a mathematical dialect it is even has the word. If I knew what of other dialect words — not terms that are only used by a specific field, but that are only used by a particular group of people independent of their field — I’d share them. (If you know any please share! Language is fascinating.)

That discovery’s important. One thing I have learned in the past half-decade is to better appreciate the culture and the history that go into mathematics. Catching a word shows some of how human a subject mathematics is.


And to beat the drum once more, I’m eager to hear of topics starting with the letters D, E, and F that I might write about this year. (Or even revisit from an earlier essay sequence.) Thank you.

Author: Joseph Nebus

I was born 198 years to the day after Johnny Appleseed. The differences between us do not end there. He/him.

3 thoughts on “Using my A to Z Archives: Ansatz”

  1. When you get to Atoz himself, don’t forget to mention that the remastered version of “All Our Yesterdays”restores that deleted scene where Atoz shows Kirk the disc of Sapian’s Science past with the scene of scientists riding slide rules around Benson burner campfires. That scene cost Desilu a pretty penny and some ugly dimes.

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