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The Imaginary NumberEpisode four of Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
The imaginary number takes mathematics to another dimension. It was discovered in sixteenth century Italy at a time when being a mathematician was akin to being a modern day rock star, when there was 'nuff respect' to be had from solving a particularly 'wicked' equation. And the wicked equation of the day went like this: "If the square root of 1 is both 1 and -1, then what is the square root of -1?"https://huffduffer.com/srushe/14573
https://huffduffer.com/srushe/14573
Thu, 18 Feb 2010 20:39:23 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbcimaginary numberThe Number FourEpisode one of Another Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Simon Singh's journey begins with the number 4, which for over a century has fuelled one of the most elusive problems in mathematics: is it true that any map can be coloured with just 4 colours so that no two neighbouring countries have the same colour? This question has tested some of the most imaginative minds — including Lewis Carroll's — and the eventual solution has aided the design of some of the world's most complex air and road networks.https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6495
https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6495
Wed, 15 Jul 2009 23:39:37 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbcfour1 — The Most Popular NumberEpisode one of A Further Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Literally, the most popular number, as it appears more often than any other number. More specifically, the first digit of all numbers is a 1 about 30% of the time, whereas it is 9 just 4% of time. This was accidentally discovered by the engineer Frank Benford. It works for all numbers – mountain heights, river lengths, populations, etc.https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6736
https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6736
Thu, 30 Jul 2009 08:52:41 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbconebenford's law1 — The Most Popular NumberEpisode one of A Further Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Literally, the most popular number, as it appears more often than any other number. More specifically, the first digit of all numbers is a 1 about 30% of the time, whereas it is 9 just 4% of time. This was accidentally discovered by the engineer Frank Benford. It works for all numbers – mountain heights, river lengths, populations, etc.https://huffduffer.com/Torvald/94263
https://huffduffer.com/Torvald/94263
Thu, 13 Dec 2012 09:21:46 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbconebenford's lawThe Largest Prime NumberEpisode three of Another Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Think of a number. Any number. Chances are you haven't plumped for 2 to the power of 13,466,917 -1. To get this, you would need to keep multiplying 2 by itself 13,466,917 times, and then subtract 1 from the result. When written down it's 4,053,900 digits long and fills 2 telephone directories. So, as you can imagine, it's not the kind of number you're likely to stumble over often. Unless you're Bill Gates checking your bank statement at the end of the month. https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6588
https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6588
Tue, 21 Jul 2009 08:36:37 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbcprimesInfinityEpisode five of Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Given the old maxim about an infinite number of monkeys and typewriters, one can assume that said simian digits will type up the following line from Hamlet an infinite number of times.https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6452
https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6452
Tue, 14 Jul 2009 12:21:49 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbcinfinityInfinityEpisode five of Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Given the old maxim about an infinite number of monkeys and typewriters, one can assume that said simian digits will type up the following line from Hamlet an infinite number of times.https://huffduffer.com/XavierRoy/6450
https://huffduffer.com/XavierRoy/6450
Tue, 14 Jul 2009 09:06:20 GMTmathematicsradio:series=five numbersbook:author=simon singhbbc1729 — The First Taxicab NumberEpisode five of A Further Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Curious properties sometimes lurk within seemingly undistinguished numbers. 1729 sparked one of maths most famous anecdotes: a young Indian, Srinivasa Ramanujan, lay dying of TB in a London hospital. G.H. Hardy, the leading mathematician in England, visited him there. "I came over in cab number 1729," Hardy told Ramanujan. "That seems a rather dull number to me."
"Oh, no!" Ramanujan exclaimed. "1729 is the smallest number you can write as the sum of two cubes, in two different ways." Most of us would use a computer to figure out that 1³ + 12³ = 9³ + 10³ = 1729. Ramanujan did it from his sickbed without blinking.https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6898
https://huffduffer.com/adactio/6898
Sat, 8 Aug 2009 11:59:43 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbc1729ramanujan numberstaxicab numbers1729 — The First Taxicab NumberEpisode five of A Further Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Curious properties sometimes lurk within seemingly undistinguished numbers. 1729 sparked one of maths most famous anecdotes: a young Indian, Srinivasa Ramanujan, lay dying of TB in a London hospital. G.H. Hardy, the leading mathematician in England, visited him there. "I came over in cab number 1729," Hardy told Ramanujan. "That seems a rather dull number to me."
"Oh, no!" Ramanujan exclaimed. "1729 is the smallest number you can write as the sum of two cubes, in two different ways." Most of us would use a computer to figure out that 1³ 12³ = 9³ 10³ = 1729. Ramanujan did it from his sickbed without blinking.https://huffduffer.com/matthewmcg/100272
https://huffduffer.com/matthewmcg/100272
Tue, 5 Feb 2013 19:35:21 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbc1729ramanujan numberstaxicab numbersSimple as PiEpisode two of Five Numbers, the BBC radio series presented by Simon Singh.
Most people's first slice of Pi is at school where it is generally made palatable as either 3.14 or the fraction 3 1/7. The memory of this number may be fuzzy for those propelled through their Maths GCSE by the power of Casio (where Pi was reduced to a button on the bottom row of the calculator), but the likelihood is they still recall that romanticised notion of a number whose decimal places randomly go on forever. At its simplest, Pi is the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. At its most complex, it is an irrational number that cannot be expressed as the ratio of two whole numbers and has an apparently random decimal string of infinite length.https://huffduffer.com/srushe/14530
https://huffduffer.com/srushe/14530
Thu, 18 Feb 2010 00:00:02 GMTmathematicsfive numbersbook:author=simon singhbbcpi