Ilan Vardi

Ilan Vardi

Hi everyone! My name is Ilan Vardi, and this is my website. You can also check out my old website, where I have most of my mathematics results. If you want to reach me, send mail to because I'd like to get to know you. My old address at IHES is out of date and my address doesn't seem to work to well.

I live in Paris with my wife Catherine and our dog Hedwige

and also our mascot Linux, who has his own blog now. In fact, he pretty much keeps everyone up to date on our family.

Yes, I am a mathematician, and I have written a number of mathematical papers.

I have also written books, the first one being Computational Recreations in Mathematica

The second one will appear soon: You Failed Your Math Test, Comrade Einstein. Actually, it is a collections of articles by a number of people (I only wrote the biggest part) which were edited by Mikhail Shifman. The subject is antisemitic mathematics in the former USSR.

I recently got another paper accepted in the American Math Monthly it's A geometric proof of Cavalieri's quadrature formula, my first article to fit on one page. Oops, for some reason, they changed their mind. Oh well, read it here then.

Most of my papers are "scholarly", but even if you're not too much into academics, you might be interested in such stuff as the legacy of Archimedes.

You can also check out the dark side of mathematics in a different type of paper which I wrote three years ago in a fit of frustration: Politics and Mathematics. That work is based in part on my study of antisemitic mathematics

If you know some mathematics then you might want to check out if you understand what you know by proving that pi exists. If you understand why this is even an issue, then you are already doing OK. You can then look at my proof that pi exists.

If you want to know more about Pi, check out this video. It was made shortly after I first saw Pi in person in August 1988, at Mammoth, California.

If you don't know anything about mathematics and would like to know what I think about it, I have written written a play called ``What is Mathematics?''. Actually it's in French: C'est quoi les maths ?

Latest Deep Thoughts

I am currently interested in becoming MATHTER OF THE GAME. That's why you may know me from from

Yahoo Dots, where play as ilanpi.

I have written a Dots page, which might help your game. I also wrote up my deep thoughts about the game and its relationship to mathematics.

When I was a kid, all I did was play Chess. This is me losing to future grandmaster Kevin Spraggett in the final round of the 1975 Montreal Open (but hey, I tied for first).

These days, I am trying to play Go. After a year (February 2004) I have reached an "intermediate" level.

I have had some deep thoughts about the game of go, including how to to deal with dirty books.

Speaking of Go books, I wrote a review of the novel La Joueuse de Go.

I have found some Go players to be a little uptight, and have been booted from internet game server KGS by head honcho William Shubert with this explanation.

William Shubert's reference to nabbing troublemakers led me to suspect that he is actually an impostor and that his real name is Armin Tamzarian due to his obsession with enforcing silly discipline.

But that is nothing compared to Go Hell (click at your own risk!!).

I have since taken a break from Go and am now playing the Korean game of Baduk. On January 4, 2005, I finally reached 1 dan on the Korean server Dashn .

Amazingly, my KGS rating has gone down since last February, but this consistent with the idiosyncratic nature of this server. I have now started playing on the best server yet, Cyberoro , which is also based in Korea, but has 7 servers: 3 in Korea, 2 in China, 1 in Japan, and 1 in Thailand.

Here is a Cyberoro game which was played on June 18, 2006.

I've heard that Linux is the best operating system and so the best platform for playing Go. I've looked into this question, see my Linux and Go page.

All of this inspired Catherine to write The Mathta Rap and Linux to record his deep thoughts, where you can hear him speak!!

Apart from that, my main interest for the last few decades has been cycling, with some very weird side effects (view at your own risk). Last year, I had some experiences trying to see the arrival of the Tour de France. I also checked out the arrival of the Grande Boucle Internationale, AKA the Women's Tour de France.

Cycling in Paris pretty much sucks, so I have taken up roller skating.

At my advanced age, it took me a long time to teach myself how to skate. You can also read about my skates

Actually, I had to stop using those skates, because they didn't give me enough support. I just got a new set of skates which are much better and I've been enjoying skating again. You can read about this skate here.

Here I am with them in Hermosa Beach, California, September 2004.

Once, I tried out a Parisian group skate, check out my story Skates and Snails.

Watch out for those cobbles though! They are omnipresent when you learn to skate in Paris.

I like to hang out in Parisian cafes like the Cafe de Flore. Here is my buddy Bruno about to exercise his style on the nearest babes.

Otherwise you can find out more than you would ever want to know about it on my other web site with its list of my deep thoughts on all types of topics. For everything else see foxycath.

Yes, Catherine is my wife of almost four years now, and we live in perfect marital bliss in Paris with our virtual family, Linux, Hedwig, Chilly Willy, and Jeanne.

On November 27, 2004, we adopted Hedwige a West Highland White Terrier. Read all about her here. Here is Catherine holding her for the first time

Catherine and I travel a lot. For example, we just took a trip to Malta

I found "Little Wizard" in a discount shop in Valletta.

You may note the vague resemblance to Harry Potter, like the glasses, robes, wand, and broom. But that's a complete coincidence, the Harry Potter name doesn't appear anywhere on the box. Speaking of which, I later found myself in a recreation of Diagon Alley

That was on a recent trip to London, check out the pictures. Oh, and I am Canadian.

Our latest adventure answers the question: Is Paris nice? and will reveal who is that mysterious person on his mobile phone talking behind that car. In 2005 returned to the race with Hedwige

In 2005, we came back to the race, under much colder conditions and with our dog Hedwige. See this report.