Quotes about Math

137557 anonym 0
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Wherefore, I beseech you let the dog and the onions and these people of the strange and godless names work out their several salvations from their piteous and wonderful difficulties without help of mine, for indeed their trouble is sufficient as it is, whereas an I tried to help I should but damage their cause the more and yet mayhap not live myself to see the desolation wrought.

137154 anonym 0
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As for methods I have sought to give them all the rigour that one requires in geometry, so as never to have recourse to the reasons drawn from the generality of algebra.
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136761 anonym 0
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Elodin proved a difficult man to find. He had an office in Hollows, but never seemed to use it. When I visited Ledgers and Lists, I discovered he only taught one class: Unlikely Maths. However, this was less than helpful in tracking him down, as according to the ledger, the time of the class was 'now' and the location was 'everywhere.

135843 anonym 0
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Music has more rules than math or magic and it's twice as dangerous as both or either.

137893 anonym 0
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It becomes the urgent duty of mathematicians, therefore, to meditate about the essence of mathematics, its motivations and goals and the ideas that must bind divergent interests together.

138331 anonym 0
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The appearance of Professor Benjamin Peirce, whose long gray hair, straggling grizzled beard and unusually bright eyes sparkling under a soft felt hat, as he walked briskly but rather ungracefully across the college yard, fitted very well with the opinion current among us that we were looking upon a real live genius, who had a touch of the prophet in his make-up.

139892 anonym 0
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How did Biot arrive at the partial differential equation? [the heat conduction equation] . . . Perhaps Laplace gave Biot the equation and left him to sink or swim for a few years in trying to derive it. That would have been merely an instance of the way great mathematicians since the very beginnings of mathematical research have effortlessly maintained their superiority over ordinary mortals.
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139181 anonym 0
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This skipping is another important point. It should be done whenever a proof seems too hard or whenever a theorem or a whole paragraph does not appeal to the reader. In most cases he will be able to go on and later he may return to the parts which he skipped.
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139129 anonym 0
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The teacher manages to get along still with the cumbersome algebraic analysis, in spite of its difficulties and imperfections, and avoids the smooth infinitesimal calculus, although the eighteenth century shyness toward it had long lost all point.

135748 anonym 0
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[Mathematics] is security. Certainty. Truth. Beauty. Insight. Structure. Architecture. I see mathematics, the part of human knowledge that I call mathematics, as one thing—one great, glorious thing. Whether it is differential topology, or functional analysis, or homological algebra, it is all one thing. ... They are intimately interconnected, they are all facets of the same thing. That interconnection, that architecture, is secure truth and is beauty. That's what mathematics is to me.

135240 anonym 0
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The ‘Muse’ is not an artistic mystery, but a mathematical equation. The gift are those ideas you think of as you drift to sleep. The giver is that one you think of when you first awake.

133088 anonym 0
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A goal of this book has been to tear down in some small part these barriers to understanding by attempting to shatter the “divinity of arithmetic,” through showing that even the methods, which we now take most for granted, were not given to us from on high, but were actually the result of centuries of scientific efforts on the part of our predecessors. p. 269
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132989 anonym 0
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Some people believe in imaginary friends. I believe in imaginary numbers.
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132979 anonym 0
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The integrals which we have obtained are not only general expressions which satisfy the differential equation, they represent in the most distinct manner the natural effect which is the object of the phenomenon... when this condition is fulfilled, the integral is, properly speaking, the equation of the phenomenon; it expresses clearly the character and progress of it, in the same manner as the finite equation of a line or curved surface makes known all the properties of those forms.
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133099 anonym 0
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Hal Incandenza has an almost obsessive dislike for deLint, whom he tells Mario he sometimes cannot quite believe is even real, and tries to get to the side of, to see whether deLint has a true z coordinate or is just a cutout or projection.

133551 anonym 0
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I carried this problem around in my head basically the whole time. I would wake up with it first thing in the morning, I would be thinking about it all day, and I would be thinking about it when I went to sleep. Without distraction I would have the same thing going round and round in my mind.

(Recalling the degree of focus and determination that eventually yielded the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem.)
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134989 anonym 0
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Math is like water. It has a lot of difficult theories, of course, but its basic logic is very simple. Just as water flows from high to low over the shortest possible distance, figures can only flow in one direction. You just have to keep your eye on them for the route to reveal itself. That’s all it takes. You don’t have to do a thing. Just concentrate your attention and keep your eyes open, and the figures make everything clear to you. In this whole, wide world, the only thing that treats me so kindly is math.

134701 anonym 0
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Sometimes in studying Ramanujan's work, [George Andrews] said at another time, "I have wondered how much Ramanujan could have done if he had had MACSYMA or SCRATCHPAD or some other symbolic algebra package.
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134687 anonym 0
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The full impact of the Lobachevskian method of challenging axioms has probably yet to be felt. It is no exaggeration to call Lobachevsky the Copernicus of Geometry [as did Clifford], for geometry is only a part of the vaster domain which he renovated; it might even be just to designate him as a Copernicus of all thought.

132374 anonym 0
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In the judgment of the most competent living mathematicians, Fraulein Noether was the most significant mathematical genius thus far produced since the higher education of women began.