mathematics

A Brief History Of Pi

That the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter is constant has been known to humanity since ancient times; yet, even today, despite 2000 years of thought, theories, calculations and proofs, π’s precise value remains elusive.


If You Fold A Paper In Half 103 Times It Will Get As Thick As The Universe

The myth: You can’t fold a paper in half more than eight times.* The reality: Given a paper large enough — and enough energy — you can fold it as many times as you want. The problem: If you fold it 103 times, the thickness of your paper will be larger than the observable Universe: 93 billion light-years. Seriously.


The Aloof Blackjack Player Who Created Our Digital World

Every digital device you use operates on a string of ones and zeroes, the binary “yes/no” decision at the foundation of modern computing. It’s a concept so fundamental to our modern day that we rarely stop to wonder where it came from. But it’s all the work of one man: Claude Shannon, whose fascinating story you’ve likely never heard.


What Are Fractals, And Why Should I Care?

Fractal geometry is a field of maths born in the 1970s and mainly developed by Benoit Mandelbrot. If you’ve already heard of fractals, you’ve probably seen the picture above. It’s called the Mandelbrot Set and is an example of a fractal shape.


Why Roller Coaster Loops Are Never Circular

Many extreme roller coaster these days have vertical loops. Have you noticed that these loops are never circular? Why is this?


11 Creative Interpretations Of The Golden Ratio's Perfect Proportions

Although the Golden Ratio was devised way, way back by ancient Greek mathematicians, you might remember it from such modern implementations as the Apple logo and an early incarnation of Twitter. But, honestly, it can be a total mind-fuck for non-designers to wrap their heads around.


Here's What A Mathematically Perfect Centred Pool Break Looks Like

If you’re curious about what would happen if a perfectly hit cue ball hit a perfectly aligned pool rack perfectly in the middle, well here’s what it will look like. It’s mathematically perfect. Not even the best pool players in the world, magnet breakers or robots can even get it to look like this.


Ugh, Who Invited Maths To The Rubik's Cube Party?

The simplicity of the Rubik’s Cube puzzle is what makes it so devilishly difficult to solve at times. It’s just a bunch of coloured squares, but getting them to group together can be a life’s pursuit for many people. So who in their right mind thought that taking the Rubik’s Cube formula and adding mathematical patterns of numbers into the mix was a good idea? Clearly someone with a deep love of mathematics, or a sincere hatred for humanity.


This Video Shows Just How Beautiful Mathematics Is

Betrand Russell once wrote that “[m]athematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty — a beauty cold and austere, without the gorgeous trappings of painting or music.” In this video, Yann Pineill and Nicolas Lefaucheux prove him right.


Mathematician Finds Formula For Perfectly Proportioned Pizza

Making pizza at home can be healthier and cheaper than getting it delivered, and you can customise it exactly how you prefer. But nailing down the size and amount of toppings for the perfect pie can be tricky, or at least it was until a mathematician from the University of Sheffield developed an actual formula that guarantees the ideally proportioned pizza.