In 1906, Caroline Furness Jayne wrote String Figures And How To Make Them - A Study Of Cat's Cradle In Many Lands [Google Books], probably the best-known study of string figures and string games. [more inside]
The fine people over at the International Guild of Knot Tyers Forum talk knots. On Mars.
So you're me and you're in math class and you're learning about graph theory, a subject too interesting to be included in most grade school's curricula so maybe you're in some special program or maybe you're in college and were somehow not scarred for life by your grade school math teachers. [more inside]
Borromean rings consist of three circles linked as a group, with no two circles interlinked; removal of one ring results in the separation of all three. Named for the Borromeo family of 15th century Italy which featured the rings on its coat of arms, the symbol has had a long and varied history. The rings have appeared everywhere from medieval Christian iconography to Norse rune stones to the pillars of Hindu temples. In more recent times, Borromean rings have attracted formal study in the fields of topology, chemistry and (strangely enough) quantum mechanics. [more inside]
Sure, knot theory is an interesting subject with a storied past, and self-avoiding walk theory takes it a bit further in describing real-world ropes, lines and wires, but can it be usefully applied to the knotty problem of spontaneously forming tangles? Robert Matthews of Aston University has suggested that there's a simple solution to avoiding tangles in all our computer cables, headphone cords and Vectran cored double braid halyard lines: make them into loops [pdf]. It's plausible, but not proven. Enter The Great British Knot Experiment which aims to provide "compelling empirical evidence to support the Loop Conjecture – and thus for its role in solving one of life's little irritations." [more inside]
Whether you want to learn to lace shoes, tie shoelaces, stop shoelaces from coming undone, calculate shoelace lengths or even repair aglets, Ian's Shoelace Site has the answer!