A Mathematician Comes of Age by Steven G. Krantz

By Steven G. Krantz

This ebook is ready the concept that of mathematical adulthood. Mathematical adulthood is valuable to a arithmetic schooling. The aim of a arithmetic schooling is to rework the coed from somebody who treats mathematical rules empirically and intuitively to somebody who treats mathematical principles analytically and will keep an eye on and control them effectively.

Put extra without delay, a mathematically mature individual is person who can learn, examine, and assessment proofs. And, most importantly, he/she is one that can create proofs. For this is often what sleek arithmetic is all approximately: arising with new principles and validating them with proofs.

The e-book offers historical past, info, and research for realizing the idea that of mathematical adulthood. It turns the assumption of mathematical adulthood from an issue for coffee-room dialog to a subject matter for research and critical consideration.

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And that is for the better, he asserts, because the ability to read music would interfere with his creativity. One cannot imagine mathematicians saying that they are glad to be unable to read mathematical notation, because doing so would interfere with their creativity. Mathematical notation is, in my view, an essential part of mathematical thought. One could not do mathematics without it. Even Ramanujan wrote things down, and used mathematical notation. Indeed, the Ramanujan notebooks are a valuable part of our mathematical heritage and literature.

Clearly the mathematicians had not become involved yet, and the problem languished. After personal computers became available, the machinists took a new view of the matter. They purchased a very expensive computer-aided design (CAD) system from McDonnell-Douglas. This software came with about 200 thick volumes of documentation, and required considerable computer power to run. If they wanted to calculate the volume of a certain caplet, they would sit down and draw a detailed picture of the caplet using the CAD system.

Instead we were co-opted by the calculator manufacturers. What do I mean by this? Twenty-five years ago, if you went to the annual AMS/MAA meeting in January and sought out the display area, then you would find Texas Instruments and Hewlett-Packard and Casio and all the other calculator manufacturers with booths promoting their wares. And they all had offers of this nature: If the instructor will adopt this calculator for his/her class then he/she will get a free one. Well, who could resist such a temptation?

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