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Why does the Sun rise?

Why different stellar


motions are observed at
different places?

(
)

How to describe the traffic


conditions?

XX (
)

Archimedes (
; 287 B.C. - 212 B.C.)


(1654 - 1722)

Gauss ( ;
1777-1855), German
mathematician
Lincoln ( ;
18091865)

UGFN1000 In Dialogue with Nature

Text 11a: William Dunham,


The Mathematical
Universe
Text 11b: Euclid, Elements

Core Question:

What makes the modern


science so unique?

Heritage and Betrayal

Why did modern


science emerge in
Western civilization?

Chen Fong Ching (1939-)

Heritage and Betrayal

Chen argued that ancient Chinese


science was not as advanced as
Needham believed.
2. Two of the factors that led to the
emergence of modern science in
Western civilization were
the close relationship between
science and religion.
the two revolutions that led to
ancient Greek science and Newtonian
physics.
1.

This lecture
Principia

and Elements
Nature of western science
1. Mathematical
2. Axiomatic
Text 11a

Newton: Principia

(1687)

Text 3a

Remember?
Newtons Principia, and
one of the translators: Cohen,
(The Birth of a New Physics)

Text 3b
I. Bernard Cohen (1914-2003)

Principia

(Text 3b)

Definitions
I. Quantity of mass
II. Quantity of motion
III. Inertia
IV. Impressed force
V. Centripetal force
VI.

Principia

(Text 3b)

Axioms ( )
1. Law 1 (First Law of Motion)
2. Law 2 (Second Law of Motion)
3. Law 3 (Third Law of Motion)

An axiom is a premise or starting point of reasoning. As classically


conceived, an axiom is a premise so evident as to be accepted as
true without controversy.
Wikipedia, axiom (24 November 2012 at 21:47)

Principia

(Text 3b)

Corollary ( ) 1:
A body acted on by [two] forces acting jointly
describes the diagonal of a parallelogram in the
same time in which it would describe the sides
if the forces were acting separately.

Newton: a mathematical proof


axio
m
It is given that
(Eq. 1)
where A is a constant. By putting Eq. 1 into Newtons Laws

Hence, Earths orbit is an elliptical orbit.

Corollary;
compare with
observations

Euclid: Elements (300 BC)

(Text 11b)

Elements

(Text 11b)

These (Postulates) were given without proof or justification;


they were simply to be accept.
Para. 12 (Text 11a)

Mathematical and Axiomatic

Elements (300 BC)


Definitions
Postulates

A system of
mathematics

Principia (1687)
Definitions
Axioms

A system of mechanics

The School of Athens ( )


-- by Raffaello Sanzio in 15091510

Socrates

Plato and Aristotle

Pythagoras

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_School_of_Athens

Raphael

Euclid

Painter: Raffaello Sanzio


( 14831520),
an Italian painter

Ptolemy?

19

1. Mathematical

Elements
Euclid:

The Father of Geometry.


Born: unknown. Died: unknown.
Elements: 13 books, 465
propositions.
~300 BC, the oldest
mathematics book.

Text 11a

Pythagoras
not

(~580 - 500 BC)

sure whether he really existed


in history. In fact, Aristotle talked
about Pythagorians but not
Pythagoras.
The entire universe is governed by
integers and their ratios.
All things are built up from atoms,
which are countable and indivisible.

Pythagoras difficulty

Pythagoras wanted to deny the existence of


irrational numbers (those cannot be
expressed as ratios of integers). The
concept of atom was undeveloped for

Platonic solids
According to geometry, there are only
five regular polyhedrons ( ).
They perhaps corresponded to
different elements.

Johannes Kepler ( 15711630), German mathematician,


astronomer and astrologer

Mystery of the Cosmos


(1596)

27

2. Axiomatic

What is a proof?
Axioms
Logical

steps

A proposition ( ) is
correct if it can be
proved.

An example of proof
Are these numbers: 1110,
7890, 3417 divisible by 9?
Proposition:
Any 4-digit integer is divisible by 9 if the
sum of the 4 digits is divisible by 9.

An example of proof
Proof:

Any 4-digit integer X can be written as


Rewrite X in terms of its digit values, i.e.,
d

divisible by 9

If the sum of all


digits is divisible
by 9, then X is
divisible by 9

Another example
Different

formulae for the area


of different polygons.
Memorize all?

Basic: Triangle

All

polygons are made up of


triangles.
Know how to calculate the area
of a triangle can prove other
formulae.

Text 11a

(Dunham)

Equivalently, two instruments are given(Para. 13-15):

A ruler (with no marked scale)

A compass (but
collapsible)

Proposition 1 (Text 11b): On a given finite straight


line to construct an equilateral triangle.

Second example: Two identical circles


Given a length as the radius, can I
draw two identical circles?

Easy! Lock the compass and draw twice.


Wai
t

er
b
em
m
Re

Elements

(Text 11b)

No postulate allows one to transfer a length to


another place.

Draw a
circle
(Postulate 3)

Transfer a length to
another place.
But how to transfer
a length? Read Text
11a, Para. 19-28

Draw a circle
(Postulate 3)

Easier or Unnecessary
Further assumption: the
compass stays open after
drawing a circle.

Newton: a mathematical proof


axio
m
It is given that
(Eq. 1)
where A is a constant. By putting Eq. 1 into Newtons Laws

Hence, Earths orbit is an elliptical orbit.

Similar question: Why dont we simply


assume the Earths orbit is elliptical?

Corollary;
compare with
observations

Why?

Text 11a

Accept as facts:
- Earth is
spherical
- Earth is rotating

Explain why the Sun


rises
Explain different
stellar motions are
observed at different
places.

(
)

XX (
)

43

Think about it
Do

you think Euclids work is


important? Why or why not?

What

makes modern science so


unique?

Is

mathematics is the real thing or just


imagination by humans?

Enjoy reading

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