public:rem4:rem4-16:mmh_empahsis_points

# MMH Emphasis Points

I discussed with them several things raised by Halmos (placed in the context of CS rather than just math):

- Distinction between pure and applied “math”; how it is reflected even in fields like literature (manuals vs. Shakespeare) or music (military marches vs. Mozart).
- The objective of pure “math”: generality, clean definitions, precision, elegance, logical analysis, non-trivial arguments
- How doing “math” can be 'creative' and experimental
- The necessity of commitment when it comes to research
- Also classic Halmos teachings on how to lecture and how to write

I then gave two examples of work that I have done:

- First work, on approximating independent sets in graphs
- Later collaboration on packet admission policies in networks, and how that can also be viewed as an online and distributed version of the independent set problem.

I then asked them to suggest a problem to tackle. Freysteinn brought up solid-state memories, that are arranged into banks, where writes take much longer time than reads. We discussed for a while the possible problems and formulations involved, making limited progress but energetic discussion.

*EOF*

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