1. Mathematics expresses values that reflect the cosmos, including orderliness, balance, harmony, logic, and abstract beauty.
2. I had a polynomial once. My doctor removed it.
3. The difference between the poet and the mathematician is that the poet tries to get his head into the heavens while the mathematician tries to get the heavens into his head.
4. My first feeling was that there was no way to continue. Writing isn’t like math;in math, two plus two always equals four no matter what your mood is like. With writing, the way you feel changes everything.
5. The ‘Muse’ is not an artistic mystery, but a mathematical equation. The gift are those ideas you think of as you drift to sleep. The giver is that one you think of when you first awake.
6. I know that two and two make four – and should be glad to prove it too if I could – though I must say if by any sort of process I could convert 2 and 2 into five it would give me much greater pleasure.
7. I’m sorry to say that the subject I most disliked was mathematics. I have thought about it. I think the reason was that mathematics leaves no room for argument. If you made a mistake, that was all there was to it.
8. I couldn’t claim that I was smarter than sixty-five other guys–but the average of sixty-five other guys, certainly!
9. It is the story that matters not just the ending.
10. Solving a problem for which you know there’s an answer is like climbing a mountain with a guide, along a trail someone else has laid. In mathematics, the truth is somewhere out there in a place no one knows, beyond all the beaten paths. And it’s not always at the top of the mountain. It might be in a crack on the smoothest cliff or somewhere deep in the valley.
11. Since the mathematicians have invaded the theory of relativity I do not understand it myself any more.
12. But in my opinion, all things in nature occur mathematically.
13. With me, everything turns into mathematics.
14. Physics depends on a universe infinitely centred on an equals sign.
15. I think that modern physics has definitely decided in favor of Plato. In fact the smallest units of matter are not physical objects in the ordinary sense; they are forms, ideas which can be expressed unambiguously only in mathematical language.
16. Infinite is a meaningless word: except – it states / The mind is capable of performing / an endless process of addition.
17. Geometry has two great treasures; one is the Theorem of Pythagoras; the other, the division of a line into extreme and mean ratio. The first we may compare to a measure of gold; the second we may name a precious jewel.
18. I think we need more math majors who don’t become mathematicians. More math major doctors, more math major high school teachers, more math major CEOs, more math major senators. But we won’t get there unless we dump the stereotype that math is only worthwhile for kid geniuses.
19. Soon after I began working for the Professor, I realized that he talked about numbers whenever he was unsure of what to say or do. Numbers were also his way of reaching out to the world. They were safe, a source of comfort.
20. A relativist is an individual who doesn’t know the difference between an adjective and an adverb.
21. we come astonishingly close to the mystical beliefs of Pythagoras and his followers who attempted to submit all of life to the sovereignty of numbers. Many of our psychologists, sociologists, economists and other latter-day cabalists will have numbers to tell them the truth or they will have nothing. . . . We must remember that Galileo merely said that the language of nature is written in mathematics. He did not say that everything is. And even the truth about nature need not be expressed in mathematics. For most of human history, the language of nature has been the language of myth and ritual. These forms, one might add, had the virtues of leaving nature unthreatened and of encouraging the belief that human beings are part of it. It hardly befits a people who stand ready to blow up the planet to praise themselves too vigorously for having found the true way to talk about nature.
22. The land of easy mathematics where he who works adds up and he who retires subtracts.
23. No mathematician in the world would bother making these senseless distinctions: 2 1/2 is a “mixed number ” while 5/2 is an “improper fraction.” They’re EQUAL for crying out loud. They are the exact same numbers and have the exact same properties. Who uses such words outside of fourth grade?
24. I could never have gone far in any science because on the path of every science the lion Mathematics lies in wait for you.
25. Histories make men wise; poets, witty; the mathematics, subtle; natural philosophy, deep; moral, grave; logic and rhetoric, able to contend.
26. The study of mathematics is apt to commence in disappointment… We are told that by its aid the stars are weighed and the billions of molecules in a drop of water are counted. Yet, like the ghost of Hamlet’s father, this great science eludes the efforts of our mental weapons to grasp it.
27. Doing mathematics should always mean finding patterns and crafting beautiful and meaningful explanations.
28. Nothing takes place in the world whose meaning is not that of some maximum or minimum.
29. Physicists have come to realize that mathematics, when used with sufficient care, is a proven pathway to truth.
30. Some people believe in imaginary friends. I believe in imaginary numbers.
31. I tell them that if they will occupy themselves with the study of mathematics they will find in it the best remedy against the lusts of the flesh.
32. I am no friend of probability theory, I have hated it from the first moment when our dear friend Max Born gave it birth. For it could be seen how easy and simple it made everything, in principle, everything ironed and the true problems concealed. Everybody must jump on the bandwagon [Ausweg]. And actually not a year passed before it became an official credo, and it still is.
33. Increasingly, the mathematics will demand the courage to face its implications.
34. This is the team. We’re trying to go to the moon. If you can’t put someone up, please don’t put them down.
35. A mathematician is a magician who converts adjectives into nouns: continuous into continuum, infinite into infinity, infinitesimal into location, 0D into point, 1D into line, curved into geodesic.
36. I would say, if you like, that the party is like an out-moded mathematics…that is to say, the mathematics of Euclid. We need to invent a non-Euclidian mathematics with respect to political discipline.
37. Although personally, I think cyberspace means the end of our species.
38. Do not imagine that mathematics is hard and crabbed, and repulsive to common sense. It is merely the etherealization of common sense.
39. Every formula which expresses a law of nature is a hymn of praise to God.
40. Is it possible that the Pentateuch could not have been written by uninspired men? that the assistance of God was necessary to produce these books? Is it possible that Galilei ascertained the mechanical principles of ‘Virtual Velocity,’ the laws of falling bodies and of all motion; that Copernicus ascertained the true position of the earth and accounted for all celestial phenomena; that Kepler discovered his three laws—discoveries of such importance that the 8th of May, 1618, may be called the birth-day of modern science; that Newton gave to the world the Method of Fluxions, the Theory of Universal Gravitation, and the Decomposition of Light; that Euclid, Cavalieri, Descartes, and Leibniz, almost completed the science of mathematics; that all the discoveries in optics, hydrostatics, pneumatics and chemistry, the experiments, discoveries, and inventions of Galvani, Volta, Franklin and Morse, of Trevithick, Watt and Fulton and of all the pioneers of progress—that all this was accomplished by uninspired men, while the writer of the Pentateuch was directed and inspired by an infinite God? Is it possible that the codes of China, India, Egypt, Greece and Rome were made by man, and that the laws recorded in the Pentateuch were alone given by God? Is it possible that Æschylus and Shakespeare, Burns, and Beranger, Goethe and Schiller, and all the poets of the world, and all their wondrous tragedies and songs are but the work of men, while no intelligence except the infinite God could be the author of the Pentateuch? Is it possible that of all the books that crowd the libraries of the world, the books of science, fiction, history and song, that all save only one, have been produced by man? Is it possible that of all these, the bible only is the work of God?
41. The apex of mathematical achievement occurs when two or more fields which were thought to be entirely unrelated turn out to be closely intertwined. Mathematicians have never decided whether they should feel excited or upset by such events.
42. Dividing one number by another is mere computation ; knowing what to divide by what is mathematics.
43. When the time is ripe for certain things, these things appear in different places in the manner of violets coming to light in early spring.
44. Most people would have probably lost count around seven. This was, Harry knew
from his extensive reading on logic and arithmetic, the largest number that most people
could visually appreciate. Put seven dots on a page, and most people can take a quick
glance and declare, “Seven.” Switch to eight, and the majority of humanity was lost.
45. You know, people think mathematics is complicated. Mathematics is the simple bit. It’s the stuff we can understand. It’s cats that are complicated. I mean, what is it in those little molecules and stuff that make one cat behave differently than another, or that make a cat? And how do you define a cat? I have no idea.
46. If there is one thing in mathematics that fascinates me more than anything else (and doubtless always has), it is neither ‘number’ nor ‘size,’ but always form.
47. Mathematics is the cheapest science. Unlike physics or chemistry, it does not require any expensive equipment. All one needs for mathematics is a pencil and paper.
48. I should attempt to treat human vice and folly geometrically… the passions of hatred, anger, envy, and so on, considered in themselves, follow from the necessity and efficacy of nature… I shall, therefore, treat the nature and strength of the emotion in exactly the same manner, as though I were concerned with lines, planes, and solids.
49. When we are young, we spend much time and pains in filling our note-books with all definitions of Religion, Love, Poetry, Politics, Art, in the hope that, in the course of a few years, we shall have condensed into our encyclopaedia the net value of all the theories at which the world has yet arrived. But year after year our tables get no completeness, and at last we discover that our curve is a parabola, whose arcs will never meet.
50. Too large a proportion of recent “mathematical” economics are mere concoctions, as imprecise as the initial assumptions they rest on, which allow the author to lose sight of the complexities and interdependencies of the real world in a maze of pretentious and unhelpful symbols.
51. The pages and pages of complex, impenetrable calculations might have contained the secrets of the universe, copied out of God’s notebook.
In my imagination, I saw the creator of the universe sitting in some distant corner of the sky, weaving a pattern of delicate lace so fine that that even the faintest light would shine through it. The lace stretches out infinitely in every direction, billowing gently in the cosmic breeze. You want desperately to touch it, hold it up to the light, rub it against your cheek. And all we ask is to be able to re-create the pattern, weave it again with numbers, somehow, in our own language; to make the tiniest fragment our own, to bring it back to eart.
52. The thing I want you especially to understand is this feeling of divine revelation. I feel that this structure was “out there” all along I just couldn’t see it. And now I can! This is really what keeps me in the math game– the chance that I might glimpse some kind of secret underlying truth, some sort of message from the gods.
53. The important thing to remember about mathematics is not to be frightened
54. In any case, do you really think kids even want something that is relevant to their daily lives? You think something practical like compound interest is going to get them excited? People enjoy fantasy, and that is just what mathematics can provide — a relief from daily life, an anodyne to the practical workaday world.
55. Its a mathematical fact that two negatives make a positive so even under adverse circumstances think positively.
56. There is no great religion without a great schism. All of them have it. And that’s because you’re dealing with something called faith. And faith is not something you can prove; faith is personal opinion. Uh, when you’re dealing with something with certainty, like, y’know, science or logic, you don’t have the–there’s no wiggle room; that’s why history is not filled with warring math cults, y’know, because you can settle the issue; you can prove something to be right or wrong, and that’s the end of the argument: next case. Whereas, when you’re dealing with faith, you can forever argue your point, or another point, because you’re dealing with intangibles. Personally, I think, faith is what you ask of somebody when you don’t have the goods to prove your point.
57. Neglect of mathematics work injury to all knowledge, since he who is ignorant of it cannot know the other sciences or things of this world. And what is worst, those who are thus ignorant are unable to perceive their own ignorance, and so do not seek a remedy.
58. It is India that gave us the ingenious method of expressing all numbers by means of ten symbols, each symbol receiving a value of position as well as an absolute value; a profound and important idea which appears so simple to us now that we ignore its true merit. But its very simplicity and the great ease which it has lent to computations put our arithmetic in the first rank of useful inventions; and we shall appreciate the grandeur of the achievement the more when we remember that it escaped the genius of Archimedes and Apollonius, two of the greatest men produced by antiquity.
59. Mathematics and poetry are the two ways to drink the beauty of truth.
60. Life is a linear equation in which you can’t cross multiply! If you think you can do it, you can do it. If you think you can’t do it, you can’t do it. It’s a simple formula!