Sport What use is maths in everyday life?
Share via Print When we look at reality through the equations of physics, we find that they describe patterns and regularities. But to me, mathematics is more than a window on the outside world: I argue that our physical world not only is described by mathematics, but that it is mathematics: What's the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything?
I find it very How math is used in our that Douglas Adams joked about 42, because mathematics has played a striking role in our growing understanding of our Universe.
The Higgs Boson was predicted with the same tool as the planet Neptune and the radio wave: So why does our universe seem so mathematical, and what does it mean?
But where's all this math that we're going on about?
Isn't math all about numbers? If you look around right now, you can probably spot a few numbers here and there, for example the page numbers in your latest copy of Scientific American, but these are just symbols invented and printed by people, so they can hardly be said to reflect our Universe being mathematical in any deep way.
Because of our education system, many people equate mathematics with arithmetic. Yet mathematicians study abstract structures far more diverse than numbers, including geometric shapes.
Do you see any geometric patterns or shapes around you? Here again, human-made designs like the rectangular shape of this book don't count. But try throwing a pebble and watch the beautiful shape that nature makes for its trajectory!
When we observe how things move around in orbits in space, we discover another recurring shape: Moreover, these two shapes are related: We humans have gradually discovered many additional recurring shapes and patterns in nature, involving not only motion and gravity, but also areas as disparate as electricity, magnetism, light, heat, chemistry, radioactivity, and subatomic particles.
These patterns are summarized by what we call our laws of physics.
Just as the shape of an ellipse, all these laws can be described using mathematical equations. Equations aren't the only hints of mathematics that are built into nature: As opposed to human creations like the page numbers in this book, I'm now talking about numbers that are basic properties of our physical reality.
For example, how many pencils can you arrange so that they're all perpendicular at 90 degrees to each other? Where did that number 3 come sailing in from? We call this number the dimensionality of our space, but why are there 3 dimensions rather than 4 or 2 or 42?
And why are there, as far as we can tell, exactly 6 kinds of quarks in our Universe? There are also numbers encoded in nature that require decimals to write out — for example, the proton about From just 32 such numbers, we physicists can in principle compute every other physical constant ever measured.
There's something very mathematical about our Universe, and that the more carefully we look, the more math we seem to find.
So what do we make of all these hints of mathematics in our physical world? Most of my physics colleagues take them to mean that nature is for some reason described by mathematics, at least approximately, and leave it at that. But I'm convinced that there's more to it, and let's see if it makes more sense to you than to that professor who said it would ruin my career.
The mathematical universe hypothesis I was quite fascinated by all these mathematical clues back in grad school. One Berkeley evening inwhile my friend Bill Poirier and I were sitting around speculating about the ultimate nature of reality, I suddenly had an idea for what it all meant: Not just aspects of it, but all of it, including you.
My starting assumption, the external reality hypothesis, states that there exists an external physical reality completely independent of us humans. It's important to remember, however, that it's we humans who create these concepts; in principle, everything could be calculated without this baggage.
But if we assume that reality exists independently of humans, then for a description to be complete, it must also be well-defined according to non-human entities — aliens or supercomputers, say — that lack any understanding of human concepts. That brings us to the Mathematical Universe Hypothesis, which states that our external physical reality is a mathematical structure.
For example, suppose a basketball trajectory is that of a beautiful buzzer-beater that wins you the game, and that you later want to describe what it looked like to a friend.Sep 11, · NASA's Practical Uses of Math And Science (PUMAS).
A collection of one-page examples of how math and science topics taught in K classes can be used in interesting settings, including every day life.
Another paragraph might talk about how uses of math shape the ways in which we live our everyday lives. We check the weather forecast to learn what the high and low temperatures for the day will. There are dozens of other places we use math in our everyday lives. Some of them are less common, but math is an invaluable skillset in terms of surviving in this world.
Point out when math is being used in daily life. Ask mathematical questions about the time, how many minutes until the next hour, how many cups are needed in recipes, the /5(). Using maths in everyday life It’s almost impossible to get through a day without using maths in some way, because our world is full of numbers to handle and problems to solve.
Studying the maths in everyday life provides you with the tools to make sense of it all, making life that little bit easier. Here’s why the math education your children need is most likely not what their school is teaching. » Education trends, Math» Does our approach to teaching math fail even the smartest kids?
Does our approach to teaching math fail even the smartest kids?
Here’s why the math education your children need is most likely not what their. Using maths in everyday life It’s almost impossible to get through a day without using maths in some way, because our world is full of numbers to handle and problems to solve.
Studying the maths in everyday life provides you with the tools to make sense of it all, making life that little bit easier.