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Exploring mathematics: maths in nature and art: Track 1

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What does mathematics have to do with nature or art? The video tracks in this album trace the origin of the mathematics of chaos and describe how the chance discovery of fractals became the basis for some real - and revolutionary - commercial applications such as the fax and the modem. A closer look at ancient fabric designs and the spiral of a nautilus shell also reveals repeating patterns that can be analysed in a mathematical way. This material forms part of The Open University course MS221 Exploring mathematics.

By: The iTunes U team (The Open University,)

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Track 1: Maths in Nature and Art

A short introduction to the content of this album.


© The Open University 2009


Tracks in this podcast:

Track   Title Description
1 Maths in Nature and Art    A short introduction to the content of this album. Play now Maths in Nature and Art
2 Spirals in nature    An introduction to a primitive mollusc, a triumph of natural engineering. Play now Spirals in nature
3 How to create a spiral    Ways of creating a mathematical spiral. Play now How to create a spiral
4 Manufacturing patterns    Using computers to design carpets. Play now Manufacturing patterns
5 How a sundial works    Using the shadow’s path to register the passing of time. Play now How a sundial works
6 Visualising a conic    The mathematics behind the curves created with a torch beam Play now Visualising a conic
7 Slicing cones    Algebraic systems to represent slices of cones. Play now Slicing cones
8 Where art meets maths    How repeating motifs in fabric designs are made up of four isometric transformations. Play now Where art meets maths
9 The last universalist    An introduction to Henri Poincare and his efforts to prove the mathematical stability of the solar system. Play now The last universalist
10 A chaotic universe    A mistake in calculations leads to a revolutionary discovery. Play now A chaotic universe
11 The power of computers    The benefit of using a computer for iteration calculations. Play now The power of computers
12 The lure of fractal images    Mathematicians have been fascinated with creating fractal patterns on a computer. Play now The lure of fractal images
13 Natural mathematics    How close examination of a fern reveals the geometry of fractals. Play now Natural mathematics
14 The practical application of fractals    Exploiting fractals for commercial purposes. Play now The practical application of fractals