Topic: math

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The exceptional life of Benjamin Banneker

Born in 1731 on a farm in Baltimore, Maryland, Benjamin Banneker was an accomplished author, publisher, scientist, astronomer, mathematician, urban planner, activist, and farmer throughout his life. A free descendant ...

An origami-inspired model for reconfigurable materials

Metamaterials — materials whose function is determined by structure, not composition — have been designed to bend light and sound, transform from soft to stiff, and even dampen seismic waves from earthquakes. But each...

The mathematics of sidewalk illusions

Have you ever come across an oddly stretched image on the sidewalk, only to find that it looks remarkably realistic if you stand in exactly the right spot? These sidewalk illusions employ a technique called anamorphos...

Can you solve the counterfeit coin riddle?

You're currently locked in the dungeon by orders of the king, but as the realm’s greatest mathematician, you've been given a chance to free yourself: If you can identify a counterfeit coin, one fake coin in a group of...

How high can you count on your fingers?

How high can you count on your fingers? It seems like a question with an obvious answer. After all, most of us have ten fingers -- or to be more precise, eight fingers and two thumbs. This gives us a total of ten digi...

Strain Wave Gearing LEGO Great Ball Contraption (GBC) Module

Behold another excellent Great Ball Contraption (GBC) from LEGO enthusiast Akiyuki, this one with Strain Wave Gearing. Akiyuki explains: Strain wave gearing consists of three components: a wave generator, a flex s...

Can you solve the airplane riddle?

Professor Fukanō, the famous scientist, has embarked on a new challenge – piloting around the world in a plane of his own design. There’s just one problem: there's not enough fuel to complete the journey. Luckily, the...

How a mathematician dissects an astonishing coincidence

True story about an adventure that befell Anne Parrish one June day in Paris. She was wandering through the old book stalls along the Seine with her husband who had been there before. He sat down at a table on the qua...

Can you solve the river crossing riddle? – TED Ed

How do three lions and three wildebeests, fleeing from a wildfire, cross over to the left bank of a crocodile-infested river to escape the flames? There's a raft! But there are a few rules that must be followed in ord...

3D-printed Metamaterial Mechanisms

Researchers at the Hasso-Plattner-Institute in Potsdam, Germany are exploring how 3D cell patterns called metamaterials can take on not-seen-in-nature properties based on their shape, geometry, size, orientation, and ...

Why the metric system matters

The United States is one of three countries in the world that has not adopted the metric system, and that may fall to two if Burma embraces metrication. How did inches, feet, pounds, gallons, and other familiar United...

Ambiguous Cylinder Illusion by Kokichi Sugihara

Second place winner of the Best Illusion of the Year Contest 2016, this is the Ambiguous Cylinder Illusion by mathematics professor Kokichi Sugihara of Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan. The direct views of the obj...

The Remarkable Way We Eat Pizza – Numberphile

You may never look at a pizza or an orange in the same way again. Watch as astronomer, author, and teacher Cliff Stoll explains the Theorema Egregium or the Remarkable Theorem in this Numberphile vid. More via Aatish ...

The Story of Zero – Getting Something from Nothing

Once upon a time, zero wasn’t really a number. Its journey to the fully fledged number we know and love today was a meandering one. Today, zero is both a placeholder, and tool, within our number system signifying an a...

Can you solve the locker riddle? – TED Ed

File under factors, multiples, square numbers, prime numbers, and sequences: This classic mystery novel set up has a wonderful math puzzle twist: Your rich, eccentric uncle just passed away, and you and your 99 na...

Will YouTube Ever Run Out Of Video IDs?

Every YouTube video has a unique ID based on a counting system called Base 64. Randomly generated, that Base 64 ID allows YouTube to have a unique yet short url by using the alphabet in lowercase and uppercase plus tw...

Can you solve the frog riddle? – TED Ed

You’re stranded in a rainforest, and you’ve eaten a poisonous mushroom. To save your life, you need an antidote excreted by a certain species of frog. Unfortunately, only the female frog produces the antidote. The mal...

10 easy & amazing paper stunts

Explore post-it note cascades, hexaflexagons, balancing paper butterflies, and other fun paper tricks in this video from former magician/current author and British psychologist Richard Wiseman. You'll find his templat...

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