Portal:Mathematics
The Mathematics Portal
Mathematics is the study of numbers, quantity, space, pattern, structure, and change. Mathematics is used throughout the world as an essential tool in many fields, including natural science, engineering, medicine, and the social sciences. It is used for calculation and considered as the most important subject. Applied mathematics, the branch of mathematics concerned with application of mathematical knowledge to other fields, inspires and makes use of new mathematical discoveries and sometimes leads to the development of entirely new mathematical disciplines, such as statistics and game theory. Mathematicians also engage in pure mathematics, or mathematics for its own sake, without having any application in mind. There is no clear line separating pure and applied mathematics, and practical applications for what began as pure mathematics are often discovered. (Full article...)
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Fourteen ways of triangulating a hexagon Image credit: User:Dmharvey |
The Catalan numbers, named for the Belgian mathematician Eugène Charles Catalan, are a sequence of natural numbers that are important in combinatorial mathematics. The sequence begins:
The Catalan numbers are solutions to numerous counting problems which often have a recursive flavour. In fact, one author lists over 60 different possible interpretations of these numbers. For example, the n^{th} Catalan number is the number of full binary trees with n internal nodes, or n+1 leaves. It is also the number of ways of associating n applications of a binary operator as well as the number of ways that a convex polygon with n + 2 sides can be cut into triangles by connecting vertices with straight lines. (Full article...)
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Did you know –
- ...that you cannot knot strings in 4 dimensions, but you can knot 2-dimensional surfaces, such as spheres?
- ...that there are 6 unsolved mathematics problems whose solutions will earn you one million US dollars each?
- ...that there are different sizes of infinite sets in set theory? More precisely, not all infinite cardinal numbers are equal?
- ...that every natural number can be written as the sum of four squares?
- ...that the largest known prime number is nearly 25 million digits long?
- ...that the set of rational numbers is equal in size to the set of integers; that is, they can be put in one-to-one correspondence?
- ...that there are precisely six convex regular polytopes in four dimensions? These are analogs of the five Platonic solids known to the ancient Greeks.
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