A Mathematician is like a Naturalist

An illustrated manifesto

Temitope Ajileye
Sep 8, 2017 · 2 min read
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A mathematician is like a naturalist. They travel far away around the world to find the strangest creatures.

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They enjoy classifying. Whenever a branch of mathematics is given a classification, mathematicians rejoice.

No one is happier about a list than a mathematician, and what mathematicians like even more than lists, is finding ways to tell a list without listing (or knowing) its elements.

Mathematicians look at the world with two questions always in their minds.

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The first one is:

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They take measurements and use their classifications to identify creatures they run into. By proving membership to a class, they immediately gain familiarity with the creature. This can be useful in moments of need.

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The other question is:

At times it is sufficient to check the footprints.

Many creatures look alike, so at times it is necessary to check the footprints.

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When mathematicians return from their adventures, they bring home tales of dimensionless points and infinite-dimensional spaces. They often like writing books about their discoveries.

However, the most important job for a mathematician is forever to be amazed by the beauty of it all.

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Q.E.D.

Reimagining the learning and teaching of mathematics

Temitope Ajileye

Written by

Research student in computer science with a background in maths and an interest in all things human. Lived in Nigeria, Italy and UK; currently in Oxford.

Q.E.D.

Q.E.D.

Reimagining the learning and teaching of mathematics

Temitope Ajileye

Written by

Research student in computer science with a background in maths and an interest in all things human. Lived in Nigeria, Italy and UK; currently in Oxford.

Q.E.D.

Q.E.D.

Reimagining the learning and teaching of mathematics

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