Chapt. 4
Two and ThreeDimensional Kinematics
37
004 qmult 00412 1 4 2 easy deductomemory: radians in a circle 2
Extra keywords:
mathematical physics
17. “Let’s play
Jeopardy
! For $100, the answer is: 2
π
.”
What is
, Alex?
a) the number of degrees in a circle
b) the number of radians in a circle
c) twice the
number of radians in a circle
d) twice the number of degrees in a circle
e) cherry
and blueberry
004 qmult 00420 1 5 1 easy thinking: 24 factors in 360
18. The division of the circle into 360
◦
was an arbitrary choice—and we don’t know why. We just
know the ancient Mesopotamian mathematicians and astronomers did it this way—you know
Mesopotamia—ancient Iraq: “the cradle of civilization”. Their choice was just adopted by the
ancient Greeks and got passed on to us. In the French Revolutionary epoch, the decimal system
was adopted for most measures, but the revolutionaries didn’t get around (you might say) to
the circle. We can guess that one reasons is that the ancient Mesopotamians had a preference
for whole number arithmetic particularly in division and 360 has a lot of whole number factors.
How many whole number (i.e., integer) factors does 360 have counting 1 and 360 itself?
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 Fall '06
 Buchler
 Physics, Mesopotamia, Moon subtends, easy thinking

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