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Young math prodigies make Bengaluru proud

Akash Dhiraj
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Akash Dhiraj 

Highlights

A 17-year-old Class 12 student of Indus International School, Bengaluru, Akash Dhiraj who has become cynosure of all eyes with his amazing mathematical skills, is trying hard to help students across the world find or create a gathering of math enthusiasts.

Bengaluru: A 17-year-old Class 12 student of Indus International School, Bengaluru, Akash Dhiraj who has become cynosure of all eyes with his amazing mathematical skills, is trying hard to help students across the world find or create a gathering of math enthusiasts. With a passion for complex mathematical problems, the young prodigy has founded his own website math-wars.com, which helps students to crack any tough mathematical problems.

Akash, along with his friend Ananya Gupta, who is studying at The International School, has founded math-wars.com that is claimed to be the first international online mathematics contest platform designed in collaboration with students from Indus International School and The International School High School students.

Students can learn, collaborate, and compete to win the grand prize of being crowned 'MATH WARS 2020 Champions'. Math-wars.com has been set up to function as a great platform for math students worldwide to showcase their extraordinary math skills.

Dhiraj says the purpose behind creating 'Math Wars' is that though mathematics goes by a variety of labels, it lacks, arguably, the most important one.

"Many feel that the elegant parts of the subject are hidden by some invisible barriers and that only mathematicians are privy to these mathematical secrets. This isn't true! There are examples of great mathematics all around us and, with some guidance, anyone can appreciate these. Math Wars is an extension of our hope to make thinking deeply about mathematics mainstream. We present a series of interesting problems, all of which are accessible to the average high school student, in the hope that they will feel enthused to attack one, thinking carefully about its meaning," he explains.

Dhiraj says several students found it difficult to feel the excitement of mathematics due to the Covid-19 situation, as they have migrated to a virtual world with less interaction and contact with others.

"As high school students ourselves, we miss the classroom environment that allows for random discussions, learnings outside of what's coming in a test, and entrenching ourselves into the competitive and collaborative spirit in math class. In our math classes, my teachers often split us up into random groups and we engage in epic feats in a race to be the group who get the answer first! We miss collaborating within our group and our class and know that our peers do too.

Then came Math Wars! We were extremely excited about this idea and began brainstorming ideas. We have created this contest to allow for some spirited competition to revive that zealous engagement with this subject!" he adds.

Asked about the unique name, Math Wars, Gupta says the 15th century was filled with mathematical duels in which mathematicians would pose problems to each other.

"Naturally, the victor was the one who solved the most problems and gained fame, exposure, and notoriety. The birth of cubic and quartic formulas along with the birth of the complex numbers are deeply embedded in these duels. Hence, we chose the name 'Math Wars' as an homage to this old practice and its everlasting impact on mathematics," she says.

Many feel that the elegant parts of the subject are hidden by some invisible barriers and that only mathematicians are privy to these mathematical secrets. This isn't true! There are examples of great mathematics all around us and, with some guidance, anyone can appreciate these. Math Wars is an extension of our hope to make thinking deeply about mathematics mainstream. We present a series of interesting problems, all of which are accessible to the average high school student, in the hope that they will feel enthused to attack one, thinking carefully about its meaning."

- Akash Dhiraj

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