Math 105, History of Mathematics

Spring 2017
Prof. D. Joyce, BP 322, 793-7421
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Clark University

Clark University

Euclid (ca. 300 BCE)
   
Euclid
   
click for source Museo_dell'Opera_del_Duomo_(Florence)
14th century, by Nino Pisano


Please bookmark this page, http://aleph0.clarku.edu/~djoyce/ma105/, so you can readily access it.

General information

Syllabus

The chapters refer to our textbook.

Class notes, quizzes, tests, homework assignments

The dates for the discussion topics and the assignments are tentative. They will change as the course progresses.

  1. Wednesday, 18 Jan 2017.
    Welcome to the class! Course overview
    Egyptian numerals and arithmetic. Multiplication and division algorithms.
    Why teach history of math?

  2. Friday, 20 Jan 2016.
    Progression of mathematics over the millennia. Mathematics in different places in the world.
    Discussion on what mathematics was used for in ancient times
    Egyptian unit fractions

  3. Monday, 23 Jan 2017. (Two meetings)
    Assignment 1 due Friday.
    More on Egyptian mathematics Introduction to Mesopotamian/Babylonian mathematics. Sexagesimal (base 60) system and cuneiform notation. Arithmetic, Babylonian multiplication table. Babylonian reciprocal table. Elementary geometry, the Pythagorean theorem, Plimpton 322 tablet

  4. Wednesday, 25 Jan 2017

  5. Friday, 27 Jan 2017
    Assignment 1 due. Answers.
    Assignment 2 due next Friday.

  6. Monday, 30 Jan 2017. Two meetings.
    Three classical problems.
    Zeno's paradoxes at the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

  7. Wednesday, 1 Feb 2017
    Assignment 3 due Wednesday, February 8. Chapter 2, page 47, exercises 8, 9, 10, 11, and 13.

  8. Friday, 3 Feb 2017
    Assignment 2 due. Answers

  9. Monday, 6 Feb 2017 (two meetings)
    Summary of the other books of the Elements including

  10. Wednesday, 8 Feb 2017
    Assignment 3 due. Chapter 2, page 47, exercises 8, 9, 10, 11, and 13. Answers
    Assignment 4 due Monday, Feb 13. Chapter 3, page 90, exercises 6, 7, 14, 17, 19.

  11. Friday, 10 Feb 2017
    Archimedes: The law of the lever, approximation of pi

  12. Monday, 13 Feb 2017, one meeting
    Archimedes: area of a parabolic segment and sums of series
    Short discussion of conic sections
    Astronomy before Ptolemy, Cosmology and astronomy

  13. Wednesday, 15 Feb 2017
    Assignment 4 due. Chapter 3, page 90, exercises 6, 7, 14, 17, 19. Answers.
    Assignment 5 due next Monday. Chapter 3, page 91, exercises 27 and 36; and Chapter 4, page 127, exercises 1, 2, and 3.
    Select date for midterm. Selected Friday, March 3.
    Discussion of topics for paper and presentation. List of topics from two years ago:

  14. Friday, 17 Feb 2015
    Diophantus' Algebra

  15. Monday, 20 Feb 2015
    Assignment 5 due. Chapter 3, page 91, exercises 27 and 36; and Chapter 4, page 127, exercises 1, 2, and 3. Answers.
    Assignment 6 due next Wednesday

  16. Wednesday, 22 Feb 2015

  17. Friday, 24 Feb 2015

  18. Monday, 27 Feb 2015
    Outline of Mathematics in India

  19. Wednesday, 1 Mar 2015
    Assignment 6 due

  20. Friday, 3 Mar 2015
    Midterm. Chapters 1–5.

    March 6–10. Spring break.
Past tests

rule line

This page is located on the web at

http://aleph0.clarku.edu/~djoyce/ma105/
David Joyce