Funded! This project was successfully funded on September 1, 2010.


Part math book, part online event, Punk Mathematics is an introduction to mathematical thinking for people who question everything.

Tom received a master's degree in mathematical sciences from Portland State University, and taught math there for three years. He is the quieter half of the Math for Primates podcast ( ), and a book seemed inevitable after the warm reaction ( to his description of punk mathematics on (

Punk Mathematics will be a series of mathematical stories. It is written for readers who are interested in having their minds expanded by the strange metaphors and implications of mathematics, even if they're not always on friendly terms with equations. Better living through probability; the fractal dimension of cities and cancers; using orders of magnitude to detect bullshit; free will and quantum economics; and the mathematics of cooperation in a networked world on the brink of a No Future collapse.

Phase 1: Writing Like Mad (ongoing)
Phase 2: Mathpunx Unite!: Six weeks of interactive online mathematical ridiculousness designed to make your brain sore (in all the right ways)
Phase 3: Rewrites and editing; incorporation of Phase 2 material
Phase 4: Typesetting and publishing

Your contribution goes to:
Writing time, reference materials, game and web design, publishing costs.


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    THE PUNK-AS-X PACK: For supporting Punk Mathematics, you get a random index card from the first draft!

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    143 backers

    JOIN THE MATHPUNX!: The Punk-As-X Pack, plus a pdf of the book AND access to Punk Mathematics Online: six weeks of games, discussions, videos, interesting problems, and mindbendy mathematical weirdness!

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    356 backers

    THE EXISTENCE PACK: A random index card, Join the Mathpunx, AND your own copy of Punk Mathematics!

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    436 backers

    THE UNIQUENESS PACK: As in the Existence Pack, but your copy will be signed, you get an invitation to the release party, and acknowledgement in the book!

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    THE ANSWER-TO-EVERYTHING PACK: Everything from the Uniqueness Pack, PLUS 24-hour access to the Math Emergency Hotline! With your permission, I'll record your call to demonstrate how a trained mathematician solves problems after being awoken at four in the morning!

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    THE NONLINEAR PACK: Everything from the Uniqueness Pack, PLUS a handmade color mindmap on topics from Punk Mathematics!

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    THE RESEARCH PATRON PACK: You get the Uniqueness Pack, PLUS an interview, research, and mindmap on a topic of your choice! Where there is math in your area of interest, I will find it!

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    THE SPACETIME PACK: The Research Patron Pack, PLUS a live performance designed just for you! Performances are limited to Portland, Oregon (unless, of course, a book tour develops...)

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    3 backers Limited (1 left of 4)

    THE TRAVELING SALESMAN PACK: In Spring 2011, Punk Mathematics hits the road! I'll develop a show from this crazy experience and take it anywhere I can reach via Amtrak. Will there be a Hamiltonian cycle? Comes with a Uniqueness Pack for you and two additional copies of the book for math-lovers or math-haters you know.

Funding period

- (26 days)