Monday, October 22, 2007

Math Is Cool, Part 2

April last year, I blogged about math coolness I encountered while poking around the TopCoder member profiles...

Yes, I'm a math geek... who knew!?

In doubt that math is cool?! What would Halo 3 be without math... think on that one! So, maybe it's not math itself, but what can be done with math that's cool.... but then, aren't we just quibbling over semantics?

In fact, I was a fairly marginal math student all the way through school and much of the way through college; always a year behind the curve it seemed. But the August 1985 cover of BYTE magazine changed all that. [No luck finding an actual image of the cover online, but I did find this great link!] My discovery of Fractal mathematics convinced me that not only is math cool, but that I was in a unique point in history to be able to combine my love for computers with the power of math.

Anyway, I've been reading a series of books from SciAm Book Club (see note above) covering the history, math, and personalities surrounding Pi, e, i, Phi, and zero. Did you know that Pi, e, and i are all directly related to each other?! (While reading about Pi, I discovered why the Riemann Zeta function series contains primes... more coolness.)

So, I'm reading about Phi, now.

Did you know that Phi can be found in the five-pointed star? Measure the distance between two adjacent points, and divide that into the length of one of the long strokes... 1.618... Phi. [From my hand-drawn star, I get ratios between 1.42 and 1.59... maybe you can get a closer result.]

More later...

1 comment:

Doug said...

BYTE August 1985 cover and contents