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Mathematics is the science of the impossible

Mathematics is the science of the impossible

Mathematics was once considered the queen of sciences. It is the language and tool used by many other sciences.

Mathematics is gisaané (sand) of science.

It is the tool that allows many sciences to predict the existence of new organisms and unknown phenomena.

Thus, mathematics enabled astronomers to predict the existence of planets such as the astronomer Le Verrier with the planet Neptune, and physicists to predict the existence of particles such as the positron, the Higgs boson, etc.

They also allowed Albert Einstein to predict phenomena such as the deflection of the path of light by a planet.

Mathematics is magic, it captivates with the beauty of the logic it conveys, and terrifies with the fear it evokes.

Mathematics is above all a magician’s science.

They make possible what seems impossible. They have the ability, whenever nature has limits, it shows limitations, to create a new parallel world in which restrictions are lifted.

Zero is not a number from our language, visible in nature.

Can we see zero cow, zero notebook, zero chicken? of course not!

But mathematicians, thanks to abstraction, have created the very useful zero!

Today, no one can do without zero. What would the state of our science and technology be without this zero that the current language allocates.

The invention of fractions makes it possible to multiply two numbers and get it as a product of 1 which is impossible with integers other than 1.

The invention of complex numbers makes it possible to obtain new numbers whose square is negative.

Thus there is the complex number denoted by i which is realized

ixi = -1

Thanks to these complex numbers, all quadratic equations have at least one solution, which was not the case before.

Grade 12 students learn that the differential function is continuous.

Distributions were invented by mathematicians.

Distributions include non-continuous functions. It is derived. Thus, they make non-differentiable functions.

I could go on and on about the wonderland of mathematics.

Far from being a hard science, a scholastic science as learners often perceive it and taught by teachers who are often humorless and without warmth, mathematics is a living science, exceptionally innovative and deeply revolutionary.

You see, the impossible is not mathematical!

Dakar, Friday 14 July 2023

Professor Mary Teo Nyan