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Gresham College: Prof.Raymond Flood – Great Mathematicians, Great Mathematics – #3/12 – Euler’s Exponentials


An excellent series delivered by Professor Raymond Flood

About this lecture

Leonhard Euler was the most prolific mathematician of all time. He introduced the symbols e  for the exponential number f  for a function and i  for √-1. He discovered what many mathematicians consider to be the most beautiful expression in mathematics, e ix = cosx + i sinx: a relation connecting the exponential and trigonometric functions. The exponential function and its inverse the logarithm function appear throughout mathematics and its applications, in physics, engineering, mathematical biology, chemistry and economics.

About the lecture series

 A series of lectures to look at the personality and some of the work of a number of famous mathematicians and then discuss more recent developments and applications..

Professor Raymond Flood

Raymond Flood has spent most of his academic life promoting mathematics and computing to adult audiences, mainly through his position as University Lecturer at Oxford University, in the Continuing Education Department and at Kellogg College. In parallel he has worked extensively on the history of mathematics, producing many books and writing diverse educational material.

He is Emeritus Fellow of Kellogg College, Oxford, having been Vice-President of the College and President of the British Society for the History of Mathematics before retiring in 2010. He is a graduate of Queen’s University, Belfast; Linacre College, Oxford; and University College, Dublin where he obtained his PhD.

He enjoys communicating mathematics and its history to non-specialist audiences, as he has done recently on BBC Radio 4’s In Our Time and on transatlantic voyages with the QM2. Two of the most recent books with which he has been involved are The Great Mathematicians, which celebrates the achievements of the great mathematicians in their historical context, and Mathematics in Victorian Britain,which assembles into a single resource research on the history of mathematicians that would otherwise be out of reach of the general reader.

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