Wednesday, September 2, 2015

What is Math?

One question I just never know quite how to answer is, what is math? Math is such a broad topic that encapsulates so many ideas and theories, some to which I can not even begin to comprehend, that it's hard to answer that question in just a few lines. I think Math in it's most basic form is about pattern recognition. Often in math when we start to learn a new idea or theorem we keep using it again and again with different numbers or different equations and look to see what patterns we can find. From that pattern recognition we can start to propose conjectures which we can later prove to form theorems. From these theorems we can use them to prove new theorems and help math constantly evolve discovering new concepts and ideas. That being said I think one of the most important moments in math was the creation of a number system because it allowed people to quantify things and really begin to tackle math problems in a conceptual way. Other important moment/discoveries in math would be some of the first math proofs for example the geometry proofs by the Greek mathematicians such as the famous Pythagorean theorem. I think some of these early geometry proofs were key in mathematics because they provided a basis for mathematics for which other mathematicians could use and build off of to advance math even further. As we continue to advance math more and more each day I wonder if the question what is math will get harder and harder to answer.

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