Math in Public

Oberwolfach Photo Collection

The Oberwolfach Photo Collection is based on Prof. Konrad Jacobs' (Erlangen) large collection of photographs of mathematicians from all over the world. In the 1950's Prof. Jacobs started to make copies of the photographs he had taken and donated these copies to the MFO. In 2005 he transferred his whole collection completely with all rights to the MFO. The collection also contains a lot of copies of pictures taken by Prof. George M. Bergman (Berkeley). Since about 1998 we take photos from every single group visiting Oberwolfach and so try to continue this excellent collection.

Oberwolfach References on Mathematical Software (ORMS)

Mathematical software has developed during the last twenty years to an established tool in mathematical research and education. Its importance is meanwhile comparable to that of mathematical literature. In contrast to the various systematic collections of mathematical literature, collections of mathematical software so far only exist in a rudimentary manner. In order to make the existing resources more visible and to use them efficiently, it is indispensable to provide appropriate methods and tools for locating, cataloguing, reviewing, and searching of mathematical software. The intention of the Oberwolfach References on Mathematical Software (ORMS) project is to initiate the development of a permanent provider of infrastructure.


swMATH is a freely accessible, innovative information service for mathematical software that provides not only access to an extensive database of information on mathematical software, but also includes a
systematic linking of software packages with relevant mathematical publications. swMATH has been developed in cooperation with FIZ Karlsruhe.

It offers for each software package a list of publications that refer to the software, in particular all publications indexed in Zentralblatt MATH (zbMATH). The publications can be articles that describe the background and technical details of a program, as well as those in which a piece of software is applied or used for research. Being listed in swMATH is a quality - seal for the software as it is cited in peer-reviewed work. The list of publications in swMATH that describe or use a software is a proof of the scientific impact of the software.

So far swMATH contains about 6.000 software packages, linked to about 60.000 refereed publications and is steadily growing. It is by far the most comprehensive existing database on mathematical software. FIZ Karlsruhe is committed to maintain and further update swMATH by identifying new software packages and new publications indexed in zbMATH.


IMAGINARY started in the German Year of Mathematics 2008 as an interactive travelling exhibition that presents visualisations, interactive installations, virtual worlds, 3D-objects and their mathematical background in an attractive and understandable way. Over the last years it has developed into an open source platform for interactive and participative math communication under the domain

The aim of the platform “IMAGINARY – open mathematics” is to provide a space for the presentation and development of math exhibitions. All contents of IMAGINARY are made available to a broad audience under a free license and can thus be reproduced and used for individual exhibitions and events.

IMAGINARY is a project by the Mathematisches Forschungsinstitut Oberwolfach and supported by the Klaus Tschira Stiftung.


The snapshot project is designed to promote the understanding and appreciation of modern mathematics and mathematical research in the general public world-wide. It is part of the project "Oberwolfach meets IMAGINARY“, supported by the Klaus Tschira Foundation and the Oberwolfach Foundation. For more information read here.

MiMa - museum for minerals and mathematics

MiMa, the museum for minerals and mathematics Oberwolfach, presents two of the most unique features of the region: the scientific knowledge of the Mathematisches Forschungsinstituts Oberwolfach and the one-of-a-kind minerals of the Black Forest collected by the Verein der Freunde von Mineralien und Bergbau Oberwolfach e.V.!


While the main focus of the Institute's activities is on research, the Institute's programme is completed by activities aiming at education and training for different groups of people.


Approximately every three years the Oberwolfach Foundation and the Mathematische Forschungsinstitute Oberwolfach award the Oberwolfach Prize and the John Todd Award to young excellent mathematicians.