^{ Type post Author Denyse O'Leary Date November 24, 2021 Categorized Education, Mathematics Tagged California Math Framework, Cicadas (and prime numbers), Iron Ring (Canadian engineers), Math education (accelerated classes), Mathematics (unsolved problems), Mathematics (war on math), Pythagoras (world as mathematical), Sam Baron, War on math }

## If Reality Is Fundamentally Mathematical, Why the War on Math?

_{Just as physicists are recognizing the mathematical nature of reality more clearly, the basic idea of getting math right is under fire in our schools}

_{ Denyse O'Leary November 24, 2021 Education, Mathematics }

Sam Baron, a philosophy prof at Australian Catholic University, whose specialty is the philosophy of mathematics, argues in a new paper that mathematics is not a human invention. It gives structure to the world we live in. We simply observe it. So do many life forms, it seems. He offers an example: There are two subspecies of North American periodical cicadas that live most of their lives in the ground. Then, every 13 or 17 years (depending on the subspecies), the cicadas emerge in great swarms for a period of around two weeks. Why is it 13 and 17 years? Why not 12 and 14? Or 16 and 18? One explanation appeals to the fact that 13 and 17 are…