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Magic Squares

Magic Squares

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Published by zacharyliu

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Published by: zacharyliu on Mar 11, 2007
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01/01/2013

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MAGIC SQUARES
The first known magic squares are from China. The famous Loh-Shu (scroll of the river Loh)from 2800 BC is the oldest magic square. The best known early magic square appeared in the1514 woodcut “Melancholia” by Albrecht Dürer (the year 1514 is embedded in the bottom row).Ben Franklin was a fan of magic squares and constructed a pair of interesting 8-by-8 squares.
 
Variations:Start at 0 or any other number For odd
n
, use symmetric values from –(
n
2
– 1)/2 to (
n
2
– 1)/2Use fractions; e.g., divide each entry by the magic sumAllow numbers to be used more than once; magic carpet = use 1 and 2 in 4-by-4Two-by-two magic square does not exist. There are 8 different magic squares of size 3; 7040of size 4; no one knows how many of size 5, 6, or higher.Magic sum is
n
(
n
2
+ 1)/2. For example,
n
= 3, 4, 5, 6 leads to the magic sum = 15, 34, 56, 111.The value in the center square for odd
n
is (
n
2
+ 1)/2.To build a 4-by-4 magic square, start counting the squares in row-major order, writing down thenumber only when it coincides with a diagonal square. Then write down the remainingnumbers from large to small in the remaining squares, again in row-major order.
 
To build a magic square for any odd
n
, using numbers 1, 2, . . . ,
n
2
, start by putting 1 in thecenter square of the top row. Then, at each step, proceed to the square at the upper right of the current square to put the next higher number. If there is no square at the upper right, wraparound along the row, column, or both. If the square at the upper right is already occupied, usethe one below the current square.
Web resources:
Suzanne’s Mathematical Lessons,http://mathforum.org/alejandre/magic.square.html).Magic Squares from Mathworld,http://mathworld.wolfram.com/MagicSquare.html; more advanced.
 
MAGIC SQUARES WORKSHEET
 

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