I think mathematicians do mathematics for reasons that are very similar to those of musicians playing music or any artist doing their art. It’s all about trying to contribute to a certain understanding of ourselves and of the world around us.

I think mathematicians do mathematics for reasons that are very similar to those of musicians playing music or any artist doing their art. It’s all about trying to contribute to a certain understanding of ourselves and of the world around us.

Princeton mathematician Manjul Bhargava, who has been awarded the 2014 Fields Medal, one of the most prestigious awards in mathematics. Read more about Bhargava and the award here and watch a video about him here. (via mathematica)

One of the key characteristics of mathematicians and puzzlers is that they don’t simply give up, they try to prove that it’s impossible.

(via chelonaut)

There’s a lot of room in infinity for shit to get fucked up.

Abstract algebra professor (via mathprofessorquotes)

Alright, now draw a 4-dimension system on the board. Wait, are you actually trying to do it?

Geometry teacher (via mathprofessorquotes)

We could write a proof for this, but let’s just understand it instead.

Analysis professor (via mathprofessorquotes)

By concentrating on what, and leaving out why, mathematics is reduced to an empty shell. The art is not in the “truth” but in the explanation, the argument. It is the argument itself which gives the truth its context, and determines what is really being said and meant.

Paul Lockhart, A Mathematician’s Lament. (via somewhatreal)

We’re back in school now (yay) so just a casual reminder to all my followers that my main purpose is to help any lost souls with their maths work.

Feel free to drop me an ask or PM with your question and I will get back to you ASAP.

Good luck to any of you that want it with the new academic year.

Everything in mathematics is a choice.

You’d think otherwise, going through the modern day mathematics curriculum. Each theorem and proof is provided, each formula bundled with convenient exercises to apply it to. A long ladder of subjects is set out before you, and you’re told to climb, climb, climb, with the promise of a payoff at the end. “You’ll need this stuff in real life!”, they say, oblivious to the enormity of this lie, to the fact that most of the educated population walks around with “vague memories of math class and clear memories of hating it.”

Rarely is it made obvious that all of these things are entirely optional—that mathematics is the art of making choices so you can discover what the consequences are. That algebra, calculus, geometry are just words we invented to group the most interesting choices together, to identify the most useful tools that came out of them. The act of mathematics is to play around, to put together ideas and see whether they go well together. Unfortunately that exploration is mostly absent from math class and we are fed pre-packaged, pre-digested math pulp instead.

How To Fold a Julia Set, Steven Witten (via crokel)