Archive for geometry

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1861 – Engel – bio

Friedrich Engel was born in 1861 in Saxony (now Germany) and was a mathematician primarily known for collaborating with Sophus Lie to publish, “Theory of Transformation Groups”. He did his doctoral studies under the guidance of Felix Klein. He studied the history of non-euclidean geometry and translated some of the papers of Lobachevsky from Russian […]

1814 – Sylvester – bio

James Joseph Sylvester was born in London, England in 1814. He was a mathematician who did significant work on group theory, matrix theory and determinants. He often collaborated with Arthur Cayley and used matrix theory to study geometries of higher dimensions. PRECURSOR: 1501 – Cardano 1625 – de Witt 1642 – Seki 1646 – Leibniz […]

-0425 – Plato – bio

Plato was born in Athens, Greece around -425. While he is mostly known today as the father of western philosophy, he also studied and taught mathematics and considered math as a branch of philosophy and an important method of understanding. Plato followed in the footsteps of Pythagoras, was a student of Socrates, and founded a […]

1853 – Ricci-Curbastro – bio

Gregorio Ricci-Curbastro was born in Italy in 1853 and is known as the inventor of tensor calculus, which became an essential building block for relativity theory. He was a professor of mathematics at the University of Padua. He worked on differential equations and differential geometry, building on the contributions made by Gauss and Riemann. His […]

1170 – Robert Grosseteste – bio

Born around 1170 in Suffolk, England, Robert Grosseteste was a student of many subjects who became a bishop in the Church of England. He was proficient in the Greek language, translating many works into Latin. He performed experiments with light and mirrors and made lenses from bowls filled with water to study refraction. His investigation […]

-0325 – Euclid – bio

Euclid was a Greek mathematician and scholar who worked in Alexandria during the rule of Ptolemy. Euclid is best known for his vast collection of mathematics and geometry in a series of books called, “The Elements”. While it is possible that most of the work compiled in The Elements had been discovered previously by others, […]

-0575 – Pythagoras – bio

Pythagoras was a Greek mathematician born around -575 on the island of Samos. He is best known for the “Pythagorean theorem” which states that in a triangle with a ninety degree angle (right angle), a square formed by the long side opposite the right angle (the hypotenuse) is equal to the sum of the squares […]

From Euclid to Minkowski

The history of non-euclidean geometry -0325 Euclid – “The Elements” was a series of books on mathematics and geometry that established a system of axioms and postulates forming proofs that became a cornerstone of logical reasoning and modern science. In the geometry of planes (2D spaces), the “parallel postulate” establishes that parallel lines on a […]

1473 – Copernicus – bio

Nicolaus Copernicus was born in 1473 in Poland. He is known as the first astronomer to claim that the Sun is at the center of the solar system with the Earth rotating about it, instead of the other way around. Copernicus studied at the Universities of Bologna and Padua in Italy and studied under a […]

1873 – Lie Groups

Topology is the study of how spaces are shaped and connected without worrying about distances. Some properties of spaces are preserved even when the space is being stretched and deformed. Often, the space that is being studied is called a manifold. A line and a circle are simple one dimensional topological manifolds. A plane and […]