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Of the love of the manhole cover

If Margret Schmassmann holiday shows photos that are shown on most manhole cover. No matter where you go there is. "Great mathematical insights are on the road," says the mathematician Margret Schmassmann and scrolls on the Laptop through your photo collection. According to your comments on these images, you will be able to escape a new point of view on these gates to the world.

Three days earlier, in the so-called Trésor Dolologique: In the air-RAID shelters in the Bernese district of Wabern and it smells of chlorine. This treasure-chamber of the Association of Dolologie are directly under the headquarters pool. Shoulder-to-shoulder four ten "Dolologen" in a semi-circle and look awesome on this treasure to their feet.

research mitaugen wink

About a dozen Manhole covers are draped on wooden slats. To one of these "conquests" as they are called here, a green besprayter lid, of a member of the Association once of his students as a gift. Then this black Gully with a Golden crown, and a figure of the Dutch Royal family can be found there. A smaller specimen is lifted out as probably the "oldest level of cover Switzerland". With fifty francs from the Bank he had been at the time. Similarly, a brownish cover receives special attention. This one could get hold of in the framework of an archaeological excavation in Baden's Spa quarter.

The Dolologen operate a self-invented science, the Dolologie. The word is a composition from the dialect term "Dole" for road-coverings of all kinds, as well as "logie" for the serious-mindedness of the effort. So everything around the Gully in the centre of stands in this Association. "We operate this neglected research with Conviction," says Dolologe Ruedi, "but, of course, with an ironic twinkle in his eye." Anyone who shows interest, be treated as a family member. The You heard.

Margret Schmassmann is a mathematician at the PH Zurich and leads the mathematics laboratory. Photo: zvg

After a brief Overview of the collection member of the Association Heinz opens a with red strap-equipped quince brandy. The common Toast is a highlight at this annual General meeting.

One of the members of the Association is Margaret Schmassmann from Zurich. On your living room table in a circle 7 English mathematics books, a stack of individual pages are marked with slips of paper with adhesive. In addition, photo copies of Dolendeckeln, on the tube pins patterns have been signed. These are the deductions of the 1000 pictures on your Laptop. On her neck is a pendant that your enthusiasm for patterns among malt: "A Celtic spiral pattern glitters," explains the native Austrian. Your life age, it does not reveal directly, appreciate. Knowing that you can read the 73 years is impossible.

drains to help the mathematically weaker children

Schmassmann deserved to be retired for a long time, but you do not need to know the mathematician a long time to grasp that a leisurely retired life does not quite fit her. So, you taught until a few days ago, at the PH Zurich and promotes in her private practice, children with learning difficulties or special talents. "My view on the manhole covers from the beginning was a mathematical, because mathematics is the science of Patterns," she says.

So you've discovered that children delight especially for patterns and repetitions: "patterns and their interruption inherent in the people," she says. The study of Patterns and structures could also help mathematically weaker children, with access to the Numbers and to mathematics develop. They are considered with their students pictures of Patterns of everyday life, among other things, gullies, and asks you to determine the number of holes. Your tip: "look for recurring Patterns." This helps to structure the holes visually, and include sent.

Also Schmassmann developed from this mathematical task is a recurring joy to Play with Patterns and structures that were to be found in everyday life, though inconspicuous, but everywhere. "To look you once in the vending machines at the tram station, as you will find below a Board with holes," says Schmassmann, and describes how such you to Ponder: How can you count the hole pattern is best? What are the options? Which mathematical structure can I derive from this? – "Then I must not see that I'm going to miss the Tram," she says with a laugh.

Zurich eintönigeDolenlandschaft

in the Meantime, images of the channel are to be found in your photo collection, lids from Alsace, Florence, Lisbon – not only those with hole patterns, but also those with geometric Patterns such as polygons, concentric circles and symmetries. "Often, I'll stay back while Walking through the cities, since I take the view of the street," she says. And there are Schmassmanns world also boring Dolen? "Uninteresting, it is only when the pattern of the channel cover are monotonous," she says. This was in Zurich the case increased: "in Many places, the same model."

a didactics seminar 2008 Schmassmann discovered that other mathematicians are interested in manhole cover. So someone talks about symmetrical shenanigans of the lids. On a pool table in the Zurich cafe hose from the manhole cover enthusiastic mathematician reasons, the Association of the Dolologie. Your goal: the manhole cover Enthusiasts of Switzerland.

About 30 people from different corners of the country have joined so far. This with various fascinations: Since there are those who are particularly interested in the casting techniques of the lid ("did you Know that in the last century every major town had a foundry?", a member of the Association in Bern), and others, to create a so-called Frottage, the surfaces of prints asks.

others, align their travel to the potential that you will get a special colossus of steel in front of the lens. There is this, the city offer walks to the cast-iron cover ("most of The look the first Time to the bottom," says club member, Luke, has offered in the past year, several such guides). And finally, there are those who collect these Manhole covers, or even those who work for the preservation and maintenance of the protection cover. Individual were able to make already a name. So Dolologe Luke says: "In some cities we are already informed, if anywhere, a lid will be replaced."

New members and new drains

At the annual General meeting in Bern, the Dolologen celebrate a successful year. Two new members can welcome you. And they proclaim: "In Oerlikon ten drains were able to be saved from the scrap dump." Margret Schmassmann this Time it was for professional reasons, not possible to be there. But she plans to be back next year more and more manhole covers and to devote their variety of Patterns.

All the information about the Association, with its headquarters in Zurich: www.dolologie.ch


Created: 06.01.2019, 21:18 PM

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