Smith, Furman

TitleAssociate Professor
DepartmentMathematics & Computer Science
OfficeSubroom o of Room 310 of Goodwyn Hall
Office HoursSpring 2012: 10-11 Mon, 3:30-4:45 Tue, 3:30-4:45 Thu, plus by appointment
Office Location310O Goodwyn Hall

Furman Smith has always loved Mathematics in general and Probability in particular. He shares a feeling that many of his colleagues have -- it is difficult to tell if we never work or we average, say, seventy hours a week. We get to study what we like and share some of that with others who are obligated to take notes on it because they will be tested later. Furman built a hardwired computer while attending Cloverdale Junior High School here in Montgomery (but, alas, failed Science that six weeks because of an F on that science project -- none of the judges understood what it was). He experienced the joy of a general purpose computer in the early 1960's using the computer language Bama Belle II, a pseudo machine language modified by Dr Gray at the University of Alabama from work at Bell Labs. Furman purchased the first Heathkit computer sold in Texas and put the kit together in the late 1970's and is credited with writing the first computerized fantasy simulation for children. (Links to the program, and the Linux Journal article, can be found at his personal Web site which can be linked to below (next to the disclaimer).) His favorite computer language is Logo; a few Logo programs can be found at his personal Web site. The team programming techniques are necessary in today's world but he prefers to produce programs by himself -- in the spirit of an artist. If forced to specify one particular area of Mathematics that he likes the most, he would name Recreational Mathematics. The essence of Recreation Mathematics is that it is concerned with problems that can be explained to people with no special background in Mathematics. He and Professor Stanica have a 2002 paper in the area of Combinatorial Game Theory. (If you click on the Web Site link lower down in this page you will be taken to a page with a link to the journal issue which will, in turn, have a link to a pdf file so that you could be reading the article in minutes.) Furman does solve problems from various journals from time to time. He has, in the past, been successful in coaxing students to submit their solutions.

Education1972: Doctorate in Philosophy in Statistics and Probability at Florida State University
1969: Master of Sciences in Statistics at Florida State University
1967: Master in Arts in Mathematics at the University of Alabama.