# Questions tagged [math-history]

Use this tag for questions concerning history of mathematics, historical primacies of results, and evolution of terminology, symbols, and notations. Consider if History of Science and Mathematics Stack Exchange is a better place to ask your question.

2,058 questions
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### Divide Interval I=[0,1] into small sub-intervals such that length of sub-pieces is of length 1/2,1/3,1/4,1/5,… ,1/n [closed]

Please, answer this question as soon as possible, how to divide the interval of $I=[0,1]$ into small sub-intervals such that length of sub-pieces is of the lengths 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/5, ... ., 1/n. ...
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### Inventor of Topological groups

I had difficulty in finding the person who introduced the term "topological groups". I just want to know who introduced the term topological groups.
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### Notation $\gamma$ for Euler's constant $\gamma$.

Question. In which book or article George Boole used the notation $\gamma$ for Euler's constant? Background. Today, Euler's constant is usually denoted by $\gamma$. In 1993 it was found out that the ...
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### Difference between Roberval and Newton about differentiation.

I was reading about the first contributes that will bring the Birth of Calculus with Newton and Leibniz, and in particular the initial problem of finding the tangent of a curve in each point. Roberval ...
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### Why do we use $\Omega$ to Represent a Subset of $\mathbb{R}^n$

From Wade's "Introduction to Analysis": NOTE: Because French mathematicians (e.g., Borel, Jordan, and Lebesgue) did fundamental work on the connection between analysis and set theory, and ensemble ...
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### Definition of Slope of Tangent to a Curve Using Limits

I am restudying Calculus on my own, and I am a little bit stuck on the definition of the slope of a tangent line to a point on a curve. I understand the definition somewhat, but I got to wondering ...
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### Who was the first female mathematics professor? [closed]

Some sources cite that Maria Agnesi was the first female mathematics professor (e.g. https://study.com/academy/lesson/maria-gaetana-agnesi-contributions-to-math-accomplishments.html, where they say ...
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### history of analogy between number field and function fields

it is well known that an analogy exist between number fields and function fields and you can translate ideas and problems about one of them to another. there are many problems in number theory ...
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### Why do we have the present order of operations, and how do hyperoperations fit in?

Something that's been bugging me for a fairly decent while is the order of operations - not so much using it, however, as to understanding where it comes from. Typically we're introduced to it in the ...
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### How did mathematicans prove things before ZFC or Peano

I do not get it. How was a+b=b+a or a (b +c) = ab + ac proved by ancient mathematicians before set theory or Peano axioms? If you cannot logically prove the laws of arithmetic without Peano or set ...
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### Has a conjecture ever originally been decided by constructing the proof with mathematical logic?

So, one of the things that mathematical logic does is study theorems as abstract objects. There also many theorems about mathematical logic, and these theorems can have connections to other fields. ...
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### What was the Hamilton's initial problem that led to him inventing quaternion?

I read wiki topic about history of Quaternion, and it confuses me on why, according to Hamilton, there's a problem with multiplication of triple (i.e. 1+i+j), and somehow the quadruple (or Quaternion) ...
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### How did Gauss find the units of the cubic field $Q[n^{1/3}]$?

Recently I read jstor article "Gauss and the Early Development of Algebraic Numbers", which gives a good description of the genesis of Gauss's ideas regarding the foundations of algebraic number ...
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### Courant (1943) and History of Finite Element Method

I am interested in the history of Finite Element Methods and Methods of Weighted Residuals (MWR), especially reduced quadrature and collocation methods. I have a paper coming out called “Orthogonal ...
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### Is there criticism in literature of Euclid's fifth common notion (“The whole is greater than the part”)?

In Book I of Euclid's Elements, the fifth common notion says "The whole is greater than the part". For Euclid, magnitudes are objects that can be compared, added, and subtracted, provided they are of ...
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### A person who has not joined IMO, can contribute to mathematics in the future? [duplicate]

The following question is a question that confuses my mind long since. I'm sorry if it looks nonsense. If mathematicians who had made important discoveries in mathematics such as Bernhard Riemann, ...
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### “Module” versus “Abelian Group” of the Integers, German Language usage circa 1962

In the highly respectable BBFSK Vol I B2 we are told that the integers form a module with respect to addition. Where by module they mean a set together with an operation (+) defined in it satisfying ...
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### Are problems in “Arithmetica” of Diophantus all solved now?

It's well-known that Diophantus had written ”Diophantus“ which contains many problems about solving arithmetic equations. I wonder whether all of them has been solved using modern techniques, as some ...
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### Have there been any computer proofs that were found to contain bugs post-publication?

I'm curious if there are any known examples of proofs using a computer which after being published, (in a journal or otherwise) turned out to have bugs in the software which invalidated the proof. I'm ...
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### Where did the mean estimator come from?

What was the motivation behind the definition of the mean estimator : $$\hat{\mu}=\frac{1}{N}\sum_{i=1}^N X_{i}$$ Did we come up with this very form through trial and error ? I do know that it's ...
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### Where does $\in$ come from and where is it defined?

Kind of a weird question but where does the $\in$ symbol come from exactly and where do we imbue this symbol with any kind of meaning? As far as I can tell it isn't a symbol that is part of the ...
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### In Mathematics is there a discrete logarithm function?

I find it difficult to understand this part in this book. Because, as far as I know, there is no unique function or formula for discrete logarithms. I cann't understand what this formula does. Is ...
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### Examples showing how George Boole's notation differs to modern notation.

I'm writing a project about George Boole, and was wondering if there was any significant examples showing the change in notation. Any help would be welcome, thank you.
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### Motivation of the Logarithm

Suppose that someone wants to calculate approximately the product of 101,123,958,959,055 and 342,234,234,234,236 without using a computer. Since these numbers are so long, completely carrying out ...