Math Seminars

The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host its next Mathematics Seminar on Wednesday, February 12, 3-4 PM in 102 Cook.    

Our speaker is former GRCC student and current GVSU student José Garcia.  For the title and abstract of his talk, please see below.

Of the three famous “unsolved problems of antiquity” (duplication of the cube, trisection of an angle, quadrature of the circle), the duplication problem has the most interesting historical background, yet it still finds relevance in modern mathematics in the realm of field extensions.  Come listen to José discuss this problem and attempts to solve it.  Everyone is welcome to attend.

Refreshments will be served at 2:45 PM.

 

A Challenge!  Geometry and Constructible Numbers

The year is 430 BCE and a plague is spreading in the city-state of Athens. In response, a delegation was sent to the Temple of the Delians at Delos to ask the priests for help. The priests then asked the Greek gods for advice. The gods requested of the Athenians that the altar in the temple be doubled in size in order to lift the plague.

What did the Athenians do?  Were they able to fulfill the request? What does this have to do with mathematics?

The ancient Greeks are known to have contributed a great deal of knowledge to what is now called Euclidean Geometry. Come and see what the challenge that the Athenians received has to do with Geometry, Constructible Numbers, and the field of mathematics called Algebra.