Tanha Kate is a first-year undergraduate student at Minerva Schools, where she is pursuing a double major in computer science and mathematics. She has prior experience in statistical analysis, algorithm design and teaching basic numeracy skills to different age groups. She is interested in human and machine intelligence, and enjoys reading about the historical progression of logic and linguistics, the complexity of modern social problems and the biographies of eccentric mathematicians. Born and raised in Bangladesh, Kate is committed to empowering students worldwide and has previously organized multiple technical workshops, hackathons and community initiatives, with a strong emphasis on women and individuals with minority backgrounds.
Project: Historical Meta-analysis of Mathematicians’ Biographies
The purpose of my project is to analyze the historical development of communities in mathematics with a focus on the structure of the social networks under which important discoveries were made. I want to quantify the human connections between mathematicians using biography data starting from 1680 BC to modern day collected from MacTutor and Wikipedia. I’m interested in exploring multiple characteristics such as geographic distribution, whether there are common topical ancestors, the networks of female mathematicians and, finally, the incidence of mental illness.
Main Results in Detail
- 1. Euclid and Newton are the most widely cited mathematicians on MacTutor and Wikipedia.
- 2. The largest clique in the Wikipedia network consists of ancient Greek mathematicians.
- 3. The most-connected female mathematician was Emmy Noether, known for her work in abstract algebra and theoretical physics.
- 1. Explore mathematical models to analyze the growth of mathematics as a scientific discipline.
- 2. Investigate the development of mathematical symbols.
- 3. Test whether measures of centrality within the social network correlate with personal success.