Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Test

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Dies Natalis of
Emil Artin

From the September 1953 Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society

Emil Artin, in a review of Éléments de mathématique, by N. Bourbaki, Book II, Algebra, Chaps. I-VII–

"We all believe that mathematics is an art. The author of a book, the lecturer in a classroom tries to convey the structural beauty of mathematics to his readers, to his listeners. In this attempt he must always fail. Mathematics is logical to be sure; each conclusion is drawn from previously derived statements. Yet the whole of it, the real piece of art, is not linear; worse than that its perception should be instantaneous. We all have experienced on some rare occasions the feeling of elation in realizing that we have enabled our listeners to see at a moment's glance the whole architecture and all its ramifications. How can this be achieved? Clinging stubbornly to the logical sequence inhibits the visualization of the whole, and yet this logical structure must predominate or chaos would result."

Art Versus Chaos

From an exhibit,
"Reimagining Space

The above tesseract (4-D hypercube)
sculpted in 1967 by Peter Forakis
provides an example of what Artin
called "the visualization of the whole."

For related mathematical details see
Diamond Theory in 1937.

"'The test?' I faltered, staring at the thing.
'Yes, to determine whether you can live
in the fourth dimension or only die in it.'"
Fritz Leiber, 1959

See also the Log24 entry for
Nov. 26,  2009, the date that
Forakis died.

"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."
Madeleine L'Engle, 1962

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by WordPress