Mathematical Digest

Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"NSF Initiative Gives Field a Chance to Show Relevance," by Charles Seife.Science, 14 December, 2001,p. 2275.

The field in question is mathematics, and despite the predominant gloomy newsfor the U.S. budget, the quadrupling of NSF funding for mathematics (mostrecently 121 million dollars) may still be on track. Seife writes thatCongress and the White House have been persuaded that "increasing fundingfor mathematics is a cost-effective means of spurring scientific discoveryin all fields---and it is also vitally important to national security." Onecongressional staffer said that mathematics is "a ubiquitous tool to advanceall areas." Mathematics is what is called an "enabling discipline."

--- Mike Breen