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Preview of the January/February 1998 issue of Quantum


Feature articles

In the planetary net

by V. Mozhayev

We’re all caught in Earth’s gravitational field. What would it take to escape?

Art by V. Ivanyuk

Planar graphs

by A. Y. Olshansky

Connecting points on a plane without intersections can be tricky—just ask an electric circuit designer. A consideration of the implications and applications of planar topology.


Waves beneath the waves

by L. Brekhovskikh and V. Kurtepov

Anomalies in the ocean’s temperature and salinity create underwater pathways through which sound can travel over long distances. Learn why the pathways exist and why they are a good oceanographic tool.


The gambler, the aesthete, and St. Pete

by Leon Taylor

How much would you stake on a bet with an infinite possible payoff?


Departments

Gradus Ad Parnassum: Variations on a Theme

by Mark Saul and Titu Andreescu

Quantum’s newest column gives a nod to Beethoven in its treatment of the Arithmetic Mean-Geometric Mean inequality.


Kaleidoscope: Molecular Intrigue

Surprising facts and thought-provoking questions about particles at the atomic level.


Looking Back: The Lunes of Hippocrates

by V. N. Berezin

Interesting by-products of a Grecian attempt at squaring the circle.


Physics Contest: Local Fields Forever

by Arthur Eisenkraft and Larry D. Kirkpatrick

The vector sum of gravitational fields is something we can actually sense.


At the Blackboard: Incandescent Bulbs

by D. C. Agrawal and V. J. Menon

The intense heat generated by lightbulbs is not just a filament of your imagination.


At the Blackboard II: Constructing Quadratic Equations

by A. A. Presman

Put away your calculator and grab your compass and straightedge.


Cowculations: Gingerbread Man

by Dr. Mu

Dr. Mu’s trusty computer cranks out some holiday cookies.


In the Lab: Hyperbolic Tension

by I. I. Vorobyov

Relax. Measuring surface tension is not as hard as you think.


How Do You Figure?: Challenges in Physics and Math


Brainteasers: Just for the Fun of It!

Check out this sample!


Happenings: Bulletin Board


Crisscross Science

Scientific crossword puzzle.


Answers, Hints & Solutions


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