Mathematics and the historian's craft: the Kenneth O. May by Michael Kinyon, Glen van Brummelen

By Michael Kinyon, Glen van Brummelen

This ebook brings jointly for the 1st time the Kenneth could Lectures that got on the annual conferences of the Canadian Society for background and Philosophy of arithmetic. All contributions are of excessive scholarly worth, but available to an viewers with a variety of pursuits. they supply a historian’s point of view on mathematical advancements and take care of a number of themes overlaying Greek utilized arithmetic, the math and technological know-how of Leonhard Euler, mathematical modeling and phenomena in old astronomy, Turing and the origins of synthetic intelligence to call just a couple of.

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It is noteworthy that Ptolemy makes a point of showing that the same parameters result from several different sets of observation reports, thus establishing that the preliminary model is computationally valid for all eclipses (and by extension, all oppositions). 2 how it is defective. He finds that the “equation,” or difference, between the moon’s observed position and its mean position (that is, the direction to the epicycle’s centre according to the model) is in general greater than the model predicts, with the discrepancy vanishing when the moon is at 0◦ or 180◦ elongation from the sun and maximum when it is at ±90◦ elongation.

But also by his passing reference to alterations he had only lately made in his models for Mercury and Saturn. 2), he justifies the complexity of his models for the latitudinal motion of the planets by affirming that the principle of simplicity in models should not be allowed to override the necessity to account for the phenomena, since what seems complex to us with our experience of the imperfections of mechanisms built from the four mundane elements may be simple to essences that are eternal and free from hindrance.

Memoire sur les int´egrales d´efinies, prise entre des limites imaginaires, de Bure, Paris, 1825; also in Oeuvres Compl`et´es, ser. 2, vol. 15, GauthierVillars, Paris, 1974, pp. 41–189. 8. J. , Hermann, Paris, 1938. 9. J. W. , 1979; reprinted by Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1990. 1 History or Heritage? 21 10. J. W. Dauben and C. J. Scriba. , Writing the History of Mathematics: Its Historical Development, Birkh¨ auser, Basel, 2002. 11. Euclid, Elements: edition used: The Thirteen Books of Euclid’s Elements, 2nd ed..

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