early history of mathematicsgive an outline of major milestones in mathematics from euclid to euler?
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Greek mathematics refers to the mathematics written in the Greek language from the time of Thales of Miletus (~600 BC) to the closure of the Academy of Athens in 529 AD. Greek mathematicians lived in cities spread over the entire Eastern Mediterranean, from Italy to North Africa, but were united by culture and language. Greek mathematics of the period following Alexander the Great is sometimes called Hellenistic mathematics.
In the 3rd century BC, the premier center of mathematical education and research was the Musaeum of Alexandria. It was there that Euclid (c. 300 BC) taught, and wrote the Elements, widely considered the most successful and influential textbook of all time.[1] The Elements introduced mathematical rigor through the axiomatic method and is the earliest example of the format still used in mathematics today, that of definition, axiom, theorem, and proof. Although most of the contents of the Elements were already known, Euclid arranged them into a single, coherent logical framework. The Elements was known to all educated people in the West until the middle of the 20th century and its contents are still taught in geometry classes today. In addition to the familiar theorems of Euclidean geometry, the Elements was meant as an introductory textbook to all mathematical subjects of the time, such as number theory, algebra and solid geometry, including proofs that the square root of two is irrational and that there are infinitely many prime numbers. Euclid also wrote extensively on other subjects, such as conic sections, optics, spherical geometry, and mechanics, but only half of his writings survive.
Archimedes (c.287–212 BC) of Syracuse, widely considered the greatest mathematician of antiquity, used the method of exhaustion to calculate the area under the arc of a parabola with the summation of an infinite series, in a manner not too dissimilar from modern calculus. He also showed one could use the method of exhaustion to calculate the value of π to a degree of precision as desired, and obtained the most accurate value of π then known, 31⁄7<π<10⁄71. He also studied the spiral bearing his name, obtained formulas for the volumes of surfaces of revolution (paraboloid, ellipsoid, hyperboloid), and an ingenious system for expressing very large numbers. While he is also known for his contributions to physics and several advanced mechanical devices, Archimedes himself placed far greater value on the products of his thought and general mathematical principles. He regarded as his greatest achievement his finding of the surface area and volume of a sphere, which he obtained by proving these are 2/3 the surface area and volume a cylinder circumscribing the sphere.
Thomas Bradwardine proposed that speed (V) increases in arithmetic proportion as the ratio of force (F) to resistance (R) increases in geometric proportion. Bradwardine expressed this by a series of specific examples, but although the logarithm had not yet been conceived, we can express his conclusion anachronistically by writing: V = log (F/R). Bradwardine's analysis is an example of transferring a mathematical technique used by alKindi and Arnald of Villanova to quantify the nature of compound medicines to a different physical problem.
Luca Pacioli's "Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalità" (Italian: "Review of Arithmetic, Geometry, Ratio and Proportion") was first printed and published in Venice in 1494. It included a 27page treatise on bookkeeping, "Particularis de Computis et Scripturis" (Italian: "Details of Calculation and Recording"). It was written primarily for, and sold mainly to, merchants who used the book as a reference text, as a source of pleasure from the mathematical puzzles it contained, and to aid the education of their sons. In Summa Arithmetica, Pacioli introduced symbols for plus and minus for the first time in a printed book, symbols that became standard notation in Italian Renaissance mathematics. Summa Arithmetica was also the first known book printed in Italy to contain algebra. It is important to note that Pacioli himself had borrowed much of the work of Piero Della Francesca whom he plagiarized.
Source(s):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_…
Leonhard Euler (15 April 1707 – 18 September 1783) was a pioneering Swiss mathematician and physicist. He made important discoveries in fields as diverse as infinitesimal calculus and graph theory. He also introduced much of the modern mathematical terminology and notation, particularly for mathematical analysis, such as the notion of a mathematical function. He is also renowned for his work in mechanics, fluid dynamics, optics, and astronomy.
Source(s):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonhard_Eu…



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