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Brian Hayes


Brian Hayes is senior writer for American Scientist. Since 1993 he has been writing the "Computing Science" column for the magazine. Earlier, he wrote similar columns for Scientific American, for Computer Language, and for The Sciences. From 1972 to 1984 he was an editor of Scientific American; from 1990 to 1992 to he was the editor of American Scientist. He has been a visitor at the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in Berkeley and at the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste.

A collection of Hayes's columns, titled Group Theory in the Bedroom, and Other Mathematical Diversions, was published by Hill and Wang in 2008. Hayes is also the author of Infrastructure: A Field Guide to the Industrial Landscape (W. W. Norton, 2005). And he has a weblog called bit-player that covers much the same territory as the "Computing Science" column.


bhayes at amsci dot org

brian at bit-player dot org

Brian Hayes
11 Chandler St. #2
Somerville, MA 02144

By this author :

Book Review

The Monodromy of Love

Sparring with the Great Geometer

Father of Fractals

A Portrait of the Economy

Mathematical Road Trips

Murkiness in Numerical Computing

Making Sense of the World

A Life of Serial Self-Invention

Machines, Minds and Madness

Electrifying Language

The Paisley Leopard

Never a Dull Number

Viva Voce

Crosshatching in the Crosshairs

An Epistolary Episode


Monty Hall Redux

Programs and Probabilities

A Mathematician's Trajectory

Semiconductor Real Estate

Art in Code *

Calculating the Weather

A Paradise of Choice?

Goodness, Gracious, Great Balls of Gaia!

Coping with Selfishness

Genius Unappreciated

Anthropology for Mathematicians


Resistance Is Feudal

On the Complex Plane

The Search for Rigor

Matter in Motion

From Motricity to Mentality

In Postmodernist Territory

Computing Science

Computer Vision and Computer Hallucinations

Programs and Probability

Playing in Traffic

Crawling toward a Wiser Web

The 100-Billion-Body Problem

Cultures of Code

Clarity in Climate Modeling

Pencil, Paper, and Pi

Belles lettres Meets Big Data

Delving into Deep Learning

Uniquely Me!

Programming Your Quantum Computer

New Dilemmas for the Prisoner

The Math of Segregation

What's in Brian's Brain?

Crinkly Curves

First Links in the Markov Chain

Imitation of Life

The Science of Sticky Spheres

Alice and Bob in Cipherspace

The Manifest Destiny of Artificial Intelligence

Computation and the Human Predicament

Pixels or Perish

A Box of Universe

An Adventure in the Nth Dimension

Leave the Driving to It

Quasirandom Ramblings

Bit Lit

The Memristor

Flights of Fancy

Hip-Hop Physics

The Higher Arithmetic

The Best Bits

Everything Is Under Control

Writing Math on the Web

Automation on the Job

Getting Your Quarks in a Row


The Britney Spears Problem

How Many Ways Can You Spell V1@gra?

Sorting Out the Genome

Computing in a Parallel Universe

Accidental Algorithms

Computational Photography

Wagering with Zeno


Fat Tails

Trains of Thought

Up a Lazy River

Connecting the Dots

The Semicolon Wars

Gauss's Day of Reckoning

Reverse Engineering

Unwed Numbers

Group Theory in the Bedroom

Life Cycles

Rumours and Errours

Why W?

Naming Names

Ode to the Code

Bugs That Count

Undisciplined Science


Small-Town Story

Qwerks of History

A Lucid Interval

In Search of the Optimal Scumsucking Bottomfeeder

The Spectrum of Riemannium

Spam, Spam, Spam, Lovely Spam

The Post-OOP Paradigm

On the Threshold

Science on the Farther Shore

Follow the Money

The World According to Wolfram

Terabyte Territory

The Easiest Hard Problem

Statistics of Deadly Quarrels

The Computer and the Dynamo

Randomness as a Resource

Computing Comes to Life

How to Count

The Weatherman

Third Base

Dividing the Continent

The World in a Spin

On the Teeth of Wheels

"The Nerds Have Won"

Graph Theory in Practice: Part II

Graph Theory in Practice: Part I

Experimental Lamarckism

Computational Creationism

The Vibonacci Numbers

Seeing between the Pixels

The Web of Words

E Pluribus Unum

Identity Crisis

Bit Rot

How to Avoid Yourself


Collective Wisdom

The Invention of the Genetic Code


Machine Politics

Speaking of Mathematics

The Square Root of NOT


Natural and Unnatural Disasters

Dennis Flanagan, 1919—2005


Flip Flop Fly Ball

Land Portraits

Family Album

Short takes on six books

Science Observer

Viva La Ciencia