Hi, I’m Steve Jones, and I’m going to talk
about some famous mathematicians, actually, only two. The first, Pythagoras, some four
thousand years ago, three-and-a-half thousand years ago, Greek, and Newton, just three or
four hundred years ago, English. Very different people. Pythagoras was very famous for his
theorem of right angle triangles, the square on the hypotenuse is equal to the square on
the other two sides. Newton, on the other hand, was very famous, not only for his theoretical
mathematical developments, but also for his developments in ideas in physics. And in the
case of Newton, the more modern scientist, is the person that we think of as the mathematician
of today. The mathematician who actually creates an idea, and looks at the practical applications
of it. The Greeks were not interested in the practical applications at all. They were more
interested in the theory. And they enjoyed sitting ’round talking to each other and explaining
and…and…and arguing about these different theorems. They wouldn’t ever try to create
something which would physically check the theorems they were making. This was very different.
By the…by the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, mathematicians had to look at the
theories, and work with them. So there is a fundamental change in the famous mathematicians
of the early Greeks, Pythagoras and Euclid, and later the Newtons and Liebenitzs of Europe.