September 2023 archive
As much as I'd like to explain what a sporadic group is, it's too involved for a blog posting. Let it suffice to say that there are 26 sporadic groups and they've interested mathematicians since Émile Léonard Mathieu discovered five of them in the 19th century.
It wasn't until 1964 that another sporadic group was found. Mathematicians of the day didn't expect there were more than five. Croatian mathematician Zvonimir Janko was trying to prove that but in the process discovered a sixth.
Decades later, at a celebration of Janko's 65th birthday, fellow group theorist Bertram Huppert said that only two events in his life had really surprised him: Janko's discovery of a new sporadic group and the fall of the Berlin wall.
This is such a classic country road: narrow, picturesque, sometimes shared with cows (see Tuesday's pic).
This is part of a ¼ mile stretch that's too narrow for two way traffic. Normally you have the road all to yourself but it's seeing a lot of use since the main road up from the valley floor got destroyed. This is the road delivery trucks are taking to get to my neighborhood, as the other road that's still open is even less suitable.
In 25 years of living here, I never saw these fields so lush with sunflowers (Helianthus nuttallii).