Sunday, May 22, 2011


“You know how many sciences had their origin in India. Mathematics began there. You are even today counting 1, 2, 3, etc. to zero, after Sanskrit figures, and you all know that algebra also originated in India” - Swami Vivekananda

Indian’s Are The One’s Who Taught The World How To Count

When people say there is no scientific rationality in India I remain silent. My uniform silence is always intermingled with deep sense of remorse. For the reason that world would not have known what science IS, but for us {The Indian’s}. Another coliseum subject which is the undercurrent of science is Mathematics and came into existence in this very land of ours. To which - " World should owe a lot to us. As we taught the world how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have made“. These words were not echoed by me but by Albert Einstein.

TODAY'S ARTICLE is based on one such mind shivering personality from the never ceasing lineage of Indian Mathematicians from the annals of known history.

So Poor For A Sheet Of Paper But So Rich So, That World Is Still Baffled By His Notes.

Two days from today - 26th April, Is the death anniversary of Srinivasa Iyengar Ramanujan.

Ramanujan who was born so poor that he did not have reserves to buy a sheet of paper to record his formulae's. Because of which he used to write many of his calculations on a slate with chalk and used to erase them with his elbow for want of space; Sometimes he would write in red ink on paper already written as he could not afford another sheet of paper. This poor boy working at accounts department at port trust office of Madras {with no university education} sent nine paper of closely written mathematical formulae to Mathematician G.H. Hardy of Cambridge University. Notes which contained starting conclusions as diverse as divergent series and the negative values of gamma function. Some of them even refuted Hardy's own papers. By general glancing at those conclusions, Hardy thought the author might be a Crank and Sysco. But deep study of those conclusions reveled and made Hardy to realize that they “Could only be written by a mathematician of highest order. And they are bound to be true because, if they were not true, no one would have the imagination to invent them".

Those notes were only the foretaste of the prodigious calculations to come. So vastly prodigious was Ramanujan’s insight that even to this day mathematicians across the globe still remain confound; NINETY DECADES after his demise. Many of his ideas are used today in cosmology and computer science. His farsightedness was so vast that theorems written by him during his life time {In between 1887 - 1920} are being applied in areas of polymer chemistry, computers, cancer research now; which in those days were not even thought about. His insights were so rich so that world is baffled that anyone could even think to derive them in the first place.

Short Striking Stories Of His Life – Too Deep For Tears

* Ramanujan had these childish questions “ How far is it between clouds?”. His headmaster seeing his caliber declared that he “Deserved higher than the maximum possible marks".

* Ramanujan once said “An equation has no meaning unless it expresses a thought of GOD“.

* During his first Cambridge lecture he was asked by a professor whether he wanted to add anything ? Ramanujan, went to the black board and wrote results the professor had not yet proved – and which he could not have know before.

* Once Hardy visited his ailing protégé in a nursing home and commented that the license number of the cab which he came in, 1729, was “rather a dull number ". For which ailing Ramanujan reacted instantly. “No. Hardy. It is very interesting number. It is the smallest number expressible as the sum of two cubes in two different ways".

When Ramanujan died { @ the age of 32 } at the height of his powers, he left a final note book full of formulae - 650 theorems as his body was being inexorably consumed by tuberculosis. His doctor’s words “TOO DEEP FOR TEARS“ would remind us of the phenomenon called Ramanujan.

Is it not!?

- Thanks
Rajhashekher BC - Raj

Sunday, april 24, 2011 11:13:16 PM

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