Mathematics has changed the course of human history countless times. It’s easy to forget how much of what we see every day can be described by a series of symbols and relationships.
A video titled “Beauty of Mathematics” from Yann Pineill and Nicolas Lefaucheux shows exactly how true that is. On the left, you see the equation itself, in the middle, a diagram of what’s happening in real time, and on the right, how things look in the real world.
It shows how maths reveals everything from the very simple — like how probability determines how likely it is that you’ll roll a two and a four during a game of backgammon.
Mathematics can derive the equations of motion that can model a spinning top — how fast it needs to go, and the topping point for when it will wobble out of control:
Maths can describe how a lens of a given size and proportion will magnify something at different distances.
Maxwell’s equations help describe how electromagnetism and a compass work.
And maths is the reason a series of ones and zeros can end up on your screen as what you’re reading right now.
The video opens with a quote from Bertrand Russell that just about sums things up:
“Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty — a beauty cold and austere, without the gorgeous trappings of painting or music.”
Here’s the full video (via Flowing Data):
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.