Circling the Square: Cwmbwrla, Coronavirus and Community

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Circling the Square: Cwmbwrla, Coronavirus and Community

Circling the Square: Cwmbwrla, Coronavirus and Community

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There exist in the hyperbolic plane ( countably) infinitely many pairs of constructible circles and constructible regular quadrilaterals of equal area, which, however, are constructed simultaneously. Hippocrates of Chios attacked the problem by finding a shape bounded by circular arcs, the lune of Hippocrates, that could be squared. color {red}640\;\ldots },} where φ {\displaystyle \varphi } is the golden ratio, φ = ( 1 + 5 ) / 2 {\displaystyle \varphi =(1+{\sqrt {5}})/2} .

In 1882, it was proven that this figure cannot be constructed in a finite number of steps with an idealized compass and straightedge. Although much more precise numerical approximations to π {\displaystyle \pi } were already known, Kochański's construction has the advantage of being quite simple. Over 1000 years later, the Old Testament Books of Kings used the simpler approximation π ≈ 3 {\displaystyle \pi \approx 3} . In contrast, Eudemus argued that magnitudes cannot be divided up without limit, so the area of the circle would never be used up.The expression "squaring the circle" is sometimes used as a metaphor for trying to do the impossible. To support this aim, members of the NRICH team work in a wide range of capacities, including providing professional development for teachers wishing to embed rich mathematical tasks into everyday classroom practice. Contemporaneously with Antiphon, Bryson of Heraclea argued that, since larger and smaller circles both exist, there must be a circle of equal area; this principle can be seen as a form of the modern intermediate value theorem. One of many early historical approximate compass-and-straightedge constructions is from a 1685 paper by Polish Jesuit Adam Adamandy Kochański, producing an approximation diverging from π {\displaystyle \pi } in the 5th decimal place. The more general goal of carrying out all geometric constructions using only a compass and straightedge has often been attributed to Oenopides, but the evidence for this is circumstantial.

In modern mathematics the terms have diverged in meaning, with quadrature generally used when methods from calculus are allowed, while squaring the curve retains the idea of using only restricted geometric methods. Methods to calculate the approximate area of a given circle, which can be thought of as a precursor problem to squaring the circle, were known already in many ancient cultures. Ancient Indian mathematics, as recorded in the Shatapatha Brahmana and Shulba Sutras, used several different approximations to π {\displaystyle \pi } . Although squaring the circle exactly with compass and straightedge is impossible, approximations to squaring the circle can be given by constructing lengths close to π {\displaystyle \pi } . Antiphon the Sophist believed that inscribing regular polygons within a circle and doubling the number of sides would eventually fill up the area of the circle (this is the method of exhaustion).There is no method for starting with an arbitrary regular quadrilateral and constructing the circle of equal area.

Two other classical problems of antiquity, famed for their impossibility, were doubling the cube and trisecting the angle. Lindemann was able to extend this argument, through the Lindemann–Weierstrass theorem on linear independence of algebraic powers of e {\displaystyle e} , to show that π {\displaystyle \pi } is transcendental and therefore that squaring the circle is impossible.

Although the circle cannot be squared in Euclidean space, it sometimes can be in hyperbolic geometry under suitable interpretations of the terms. Despite the proof that it is impossible, attempts to square the circle have been common in pseudomathematics (i. If π {\displaystyle {\sqrt {\pi }}} were a constructible number, it would follow from standard compass and straightedge constructions that π {\displaystyle \pi } would also be constructible.



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