In January 2005 I started a blog called The Mad Professah Lectures. I now blog daily there and tweet pretty regularly as well!
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I have set up web pages for all of the classes that I teach at Occidental. In Fall 2010 I taught Differential Equations and LGBT Rights in the Era of Obama and Google. I was on sabbatical in Spring 2011.
In general, I am interested in the mathematical modeling of physical situations (usually fluid flow of some kind) and applying mathematics to "real world" situations. This usually ends up involving nonlinear partial differential equations, which have to be solved numerically, using computational methods. I'm a "finite-difference" kinda guy, myself. In particular, I have become interested in "non-standard" finite differences of the sort Ronald E Mickens has been publishing about for at least twenty years. I have completed multiple papers on this topic, two of which were published in the journal Numerical Methods for Partial Differential Equations (Investigations of Nonstandard, Mickens-type, Finite-Difference Schemes for Singular Boundary Value Problems in Cylindrical or Spherical Coordinates and "Application of a Mickens finite-difference scheme to the cylindrical Bratu-Gelfand problem." I'm currently working on extending this work by applying nonstandard finite-differences to the famous Bratu-Gel'fand problem in spherical coordinates.
One of my publications introduced a new type of mathematical model of the evolution of movie grosses over time. It was co-written with a colleague of mine at the University of Delaware named David A. Edwards and is entitled "A Differential Equation Model of North American Cinematic Box-Office Dynamics." It was published in the July 2001 issue of the IMA Journal of Management Mathematics. I have been actively working on a sequel to this paper with undergraduate student Jacob Ortega-Gingrich since Summer 2010. Of course, it's an attempt at a mathematical model of the relationship between movie sequels and their "parent" films.
If you are interested, you can read an abstract of my PhD thesis, The Design Of Shock-Free Transonic Slender Bodies. If you are really perverse, you can download a copy of the entire thesis itself or view the entire thesis online in PDF format.
I received my Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in August 1994. RPI (Rensselaer) is in Troy, NY. I spent 8 years of my life there (1986-94) earning my Bachelor's (1989), Masters (1992) and PhD (1994) degrees.
Before I lived in Troy, I used to live and go to high school at Combermere School, the oldest high school in Barbados, which is in the Caribbean. While I was there (1978-1986) I became interested in chess. By the time I was 18 I had earned the titles of U.S. National Master, U.S. Senior Master and FIDE Master. In fact, I'm still an internationally and nationally ranked chess player. My current international chess rating is 2320. My United States Chess Federation rating is 2422. You can look at one of my most famous games, Buckmire-Lawson, where I beat an International Master in 14 moves(!) at the 1985 British Championships when I was 17.
I also play chess relatively often on the chess.com website. You can view my completed games here.
I guess one of the things I'm most famous for is the creation of the Queer Resources Directory, which is the oldest and largest Internet online resource of information about gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgendered people, as well as AIDS and HIV. There are a number of copies of the QRD Mirrors in the United States, United Kingdom and Israel. In 1996, the QRD became one of the 20 plaintiffs in the lawsuit, RENO vs ACLU et alia attempting to strike down the ``indecency provisions'' of the Telecommunication Act of 1996 as unconstitutional. On June 26 1997, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the federal Communications Decency Act was unconstitutional (521 U.S. 844) .
When I'm not involved in all of the things above I spend my time at the gym, playing tennis, or reading books, watching movies, listening to CDs, etc. I have compiled a list of my favorite books, movies, CDs which you can compare my faves to yours.
I often give public talks and the public files will be available at this link: http://faculty.oxy.edu/ron/talks/
For my research talks, go to http://faculty.oxy.edu/ron/research/
One famous talk of mine was at the 2005 Joint Math Meetings in Atlanta and was about my three favorite Calculus problems, which are reproduced below.
My Three Favorite Calculus Problems (Talk at the Joint Math Meetings, January 8 2005, in PDF form)
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