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Task, deliverables, time-line, and due dates.

Task. Analyze which rectangular (and/or triangular) boards can be tiled

with different tiles, possibly after some square(s)/triangle(s) has/have been
designated to be removed (or left over). State your results as theorems and prove
these with an emphasis on induction proofs, pigeon-hole principle, parity, and
coloring arguments.

The main goal should be question 7: Which m m boards can be tiled

with bent triominos ?. Refer to the handout above for details, and for other
questions that suggest preparatory and further lines of inquiry.

The final deliverable shall be a .pdf file, preferably typed (length about
10 pages with e.g. 1.5 line-spacing). The paper should have a professional
appearance, but most important are its technical mathematical content, and
excellent writing to communicate your results and arguments.

The final paper is due Wednesday June 14 at 11:59pm as an attachment

to e-mail sent to A one-page hard-copy sample, as evidence that
work has started is due in class Friday June 2. A preliminary version (hard-copy)
collected in class Thursday June 8 for feedback is highly encouraged.

You are encouraged to work together and welcome to use available

literature. To enjoy the fun of discovery, do NOT perform exhaustive searches of
the internet. The final papers shall be written individually and must acknowledge
all collaboration, outside help, and use of the literature (paper and electronic).
You shall earn credit for the problems you solved, not for solutions you copied.

Objectives. This project shall

give you an introductory experience to open-ended mathematical

problem solving that explores a longer and coherent, but flexible line of inquiry,

give you an opportunity to apply strategies, tools, and methods to larger

problems than in routine textbook exercises, and

ask you to develop and practice communication skills that are essential
to share technical findings and arguments with the community (here envision an
audience of educated peers).
Assessment criteria, corresponding to the objectives

Did your inquiry result in a string of results (theorems, and proofs) that build on each
other and address item 7?

Did you employ proofs by induction (and parity/coloring arguments)?

Did you clearly communicate your findings in a professional format suitable for the
intended audience?

More suggestions for lines of inquiry and paper structure

Select items from the tiling handout as a scaffold for building up from simple
cases and proofs to the main goal (item 7), and also for more open ended
explorations (triangular boards, straight triominos and other tiles).

Start with an informal description of what tiling means, an outline of the

problems addressed by you, and an overview of your main findings. Give an
outline of the main tools that you used (e.g. how induction or parity fit in as
appropriate tools).

Start with some easy problems to set the stage, give a preview of what is to
come: dominos, even, odd, divisible by, grids of size 2n 2n (chosen from
items 2 to 6, but you may include item 1 for a nice induction argument).

One possible approach may start with instances of problems that cannot be tiled
due to some parity problem, and then contrast (game-of-solitaire-style) the
difference between leaving some square uncovered and leaving any specific,
preassigned square uncovered (connect with MAT 300: there exists and for

The central part of the paper should use induction you will need to invent
some variation of the textbook version: Enjoy when you discover how!

Fell free to explore new questions that arise during your inquiry, e.g. transfer
your technique to triangular boards (not necessarily of size 2n - but size 2n most
closely matches the strategy/arguments for the square 2n 2n).