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The Organic Mathematics Project

See http://www.cecm.sfu.ca/~organic for a full description of this workshop, or some of the papers in section 7. This ambitious project was the first phase of ``-plexus'' funded by the National Centre of Excellence in Telelearning at Simon Fraser University. Its goals were to use (possibly existing, possibly research-level) articles written to a high expository standard as a test-bed for teaching mathematics on the Web. The papers were `activated' using new tools and enthusiastic people, and presented by the authors at a conference following the 1995 Winter Annual Meeting of the Canadian Mathematics Society. The electronic proceedings were the main goal of the project; a hardcopy version is also available.

I was the Chair of the workshop, financially supported by Simon Fraser University, Western, and the National Centre for Excellence in Telelearning; I worked closely with Jon and Peter Borwein and Loki Jörgenson on all aspects of the workshop. It was an extremely interesting experience. The main lesson we learned is that it is possible to be simultaneously on the cutting edge and yet obsolete; technology changes very quickly! The other main lesson is that there are many nontrivial issues that have yet to be worked out before mathematics can really be taught over the Web; and in some cases these issues (archival value, for example) run counter to current directions of the Web.



Robert Corless
Fri Jan 9 10:26:41 EST 1998