Famous Mathematicians Of The Past Century

You're reading Famous Mathematicians Of The Past Century, posted on Friday, January 21st, 2011 at 11:02 pm in Mathematicians, on BrainBloggers at the Science blog. More after the jump.

Mathematics is a very diverse subject and there are a number of people throughout the course of history, who have contributed in some way or the other. The list goes on and on. However there are a few famous mathematicians who have made significant contributions and whose names cannot be shrouded in mystery are listed as follows:

1)Euclid- He is probably the most famous mathematician of all times. His contribution known as “Euclid’s Elements” is divided into 13 books. The first six are based on plane geometry. Seven, eight and nine are based on number theory. Number ten is based on Eudoxus’s theory of irrational numbers. Eleven to thirteen comprise of solid geometry. And the last, but crucial part shows the properties of five regular polyhedrons and proof that there can be only five of them. The Elements are lucid regarding the order and the selection of problems and theorems. There are less extraneous material, minimum assumptions and logic in propositions. They were first published in 1942. He contributed in other fields such as on division of figures, optics, phenomena and data.

2)Archimedes- His name requires no introduction. He is one of the famous mathematicians of all times. His most notable contributions have been in the field of geometry regarding the areas and volumes of curved surfaces and areas of plane figures. He introduced the concept of integral calculus which was then theorized by Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz and Isaac Newton. He was the pioneer to prove that volume of a sphere is equal to two-thirds the volume of a circumscribed cylinder. He also found the approximate value of pi by circumscribing and inscribing a circle with polygons with 96 sides. Some of his works were: measurement of a circle, on conoids and spheroids, on the sphere and cylinder, on plane equilibrium, on spirals, the sand reckoner, on floating bodies, quardrature of the parabola and stomachion and so on.

3)Pythagoras- His theorems are famous amongst school children too. He was a Greek mathematician who believed that all relations could be expressed as numerical relations, as in, all things are numbers. The Pythagorean theorem is thought to be proved by Pythagoras first. He also observed that the vibrating strings create harmonious notes if the ratio of the length of the strings are whole numbers. The same ratio can be sextended to other devices too.

4)Carl Friedrich Gauss- He was famous for his contribution to number theory. In the 18th century he proved the possibility of a 17 sided regular polygon with the help of a ruler and compass only. At the beginning of the 19th century his dissertation revealed the evidence of the fundamental theorem of algebra. He also gained prominence when he predicted the exact location of the appearance of the asteroid Ceres by calculating the orbit by an improved theory.

5)Ramanujam- Srinivasan Ramajunam Iyenger contributed to mathematical analysis, continued fractions, number theory and infinite series. He was one of the few famous mathematicians of India. The Ramanujam theta and Ramanujam prime have led to a tremendous further research.