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The Story of Maths The Language of the Universe

   2008    Science
This four-part British television series outlines aspects of the history of mathematics. Written and presented by University of Oxford professor Marcus du Sautoy, it is a co-production between the Open University and the BBC. In the first episode, Marcus du Sautoy in Egypt uncovers use of a decimal system based on ten fingers of the hand and discovers that the way we tell the time is based on the Babylonian Base 60 number system. In Greece, he looks at the contributions of some of the giants of mathematics including Plato, Archimedes and Pythagoras, who is credited with beginning the transformation of mathematics from a counting tool into the analytical subject of today. A controversial figure, Pythagoras’ teachings were considered suspect and his followers seen as social outcasts and a little be strange and not in the norm. There is a legend going around that one of his followers, Hippasus, was drowned when he announced his discovery of irrational numbers. As well as his work on the properties of right angled triangles, Pythagoras developed another important theory after observing musical instruments. He discovered that the intervals between harmonious musical notes are always in whole number intervals.
Series: The Story of Maths

The Story of Maths To Infinity and Beyond

   2008    Science
In the fourth episode, Professor Marcus du Sautoy concludes his investigation into the history of mathematics with a look at some of the great unsolved problems that confronted mathematicians in the 20th century. After exploring Georg Cantor's work on infinity and Henri Poincare's work on chaos theory, he sees how mathematics was itself thrown into chaos by the discoveries of Kurt Godel and Paul Cohen, before completing his journey by considering some unsolved problems of maths today, including the Riemann Hypothesis.
Series: The Story of Maths

The Wall Street Code

   2013    Science
Super quick computers and advanced mathematical formulas have taken over trading on the financial markets from human beings -algorithms- which seem to have a life of their own. The only ones who understand the system in any way are its architects, the algorithm developers. Haim Bodek is one such algo-developer. After finding some strange wrongdoings he set out on a personal crusade against this elusive system". The machinery behind our financial markets, consisting of mathematical models, data centers and miles and miles of fiber optic cables, is disguised by technological complexity and secrecy. The builders of this financial system are a new breed of Wall Street employees -quants- mathematicians and physicists who are responsible for a technological revolution. Haim Bodek is a quant; he specialized in artificial intelligence and worked for Goldman Sachs. He knows the system from the inside, he helped build it. Haim Bodek was invited to tell his story at the "Battle of the Quants" - a recurring event where quants discuss high-frequency trading, amongst other things. Bodek wrote an algorithm for trading machines that would generate guaranteed income - a money machine that weathered the financial meltdown of 2008. But then from one day to the next the algorithm stopped working.

To Infinity and Beyond

   2010    Science
By our third year, most of us will have learned to count. Once we know how, it seems as if there would be nothing to stop us counting forever. But, while infinity might seem like an perfectly innocent idea, keep counting and you enter a paradoxical world where nothing is as it seems. Mathematicians have discovered there are infinitely many infinities, each one infinitely bigger than the last. And if the universe goes on forever, the consequences are even more bizarre. In an infinite universe, there are infinitely many copies of the Earth and infinitely many copies of you. Older than time, bigger than the universe and stranger than fiction. This is the story of infinity.

Unlocking the Great Pyramid

   2008    History
When ancient architects completed construction on the Great Pyramid at Giza, they left behind the greatest riddle of the engineering world—how did builders lift limestone blocks weighing an average of two and a half tons 480 feet up onto the top of the Pyramid? For centuries, adventurers and Egyptologists have crawled through every passageway and chamber of the Pyramid, measuring and collecting data in an attempt to determine how it was built. For the first time, a revolutionary theory argues that the answer may be inside the Pyramid. Architect Jean-Pierre Houdin and Egyptologist Bob Brier use 3-D software to unlock the secret.
Shine a Light
Shine a Light

   2008    Art
Oceans
Oceans

   2009    Nature
The Sky at Night
The Sky at Night

   2016    Science
The Men Who Built America
The Men Who Built America

   2012    History
Life Story
Life Story

   2014    Nature
The Germanic Tribes
The Germanic Tribes

   2007    History
Atom
Atom

   2007    Science
Everything and Nothing
Everything and Nothing

   2011    Science