mgf1107lecture22 - MGF 1107 EXPLORATIONS IN MATHEMATICS...

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MGF 1107 – EXPLORATIONS IN MATHEMATICS LECTURE 22 Fibonacci While some would contend that the greatest achievement of Leonardo of Pisa, who we know today as Fibonacci (c. 1170-1250), was to bring the work of others to the attention of those in Europe, there seems little doubt that Fibonacci himself possessed great talent, and was the leading European mathematician during the Middle Ages. Although born in Pisa, Fibonacci was raised by his father in North Africa, and became aware of the work of Eastern and Arabic mathematicians during extended visits to Egypt, Sicily, Greece, and Syria. He quickly realized the tremendous benefit when applying the Hindu-Arabic digits 0-9 to arithmetic calculations (as opposed to Roman numerals), and returned to Pisa at the age of 30 to begin writing down all that he had learned overseas. His most famous work, the Liber Abaci (Book of Counting), was published in 1202, and his algebraic methods clearly demonstrate the influence of Persian mathematicians. Much of Fibonacci’s reputation as a great mathematician in his own right is built around a later book, the Liber Quadratorum (Book of Squares), written around 1225, which contains entirely original work, and was written at a level that most scholars of that time could not comprehend. Fibonacci’s talent was eventually recognized by those in authority, and he became a regular guest of Emperor Frederick II after successfully answering some difficult challenge problems set by one of his courtiers
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mgf1107lecture22 - MGF 1107 EXPLORATIONS IN MATHEMATICS...

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