Download e-book for iPad: Forgotten revolution by Lucio Russo

By Lucio Russo

The 3rd and moment centuries BC witnessed, within the Greek international, a systematic and technological explosion. Greek tradition had reached nice heights in artwork, literature and philosophy already within the prior classical period, however it was once within the age of Archimedes and Euclid that technology as we all know it was once born, and gave upward push to classy expertise that might no longer be obvious back till the 18th century. This medical revolution was once additionally followed via nice alterations and a brand new form of understanding in lots of different fields, together with artwork and drugs. What have been the landmarks within the meteoric upward push of technology 2300 years in the past? Why are they so little identified this present day, even between scientists, classicists and historians? How do they relate to the post-1500 technology that we're conversant in from institution? What ended in the top of old technology? those are the questions that this e-book discusses, within the trust that the solutions endure on offerings we are facing at the present time.

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Hellenistic Mathematics case until a while ago), because it was inherited by modern mathematics. Note the privileged role played, from the postulates on, by lines and circles. The reason for this choice is clear: these two entities play a special role because they are the mathematical models of what can be drawn with ruler and compass. Euclidean geometry arises explicitly as the scientific theory of the objects that can be drawn with ruler and compass. Euclid’s first three postulates are nothing but the straightforward transposition, into the context of mathematical theory, of the usual operations carried out with these basic instruments.

An anthology of original texts can be found in [GMW], whose two little volumes are all the Loeb Classical Library spares for Greek mathematics. 11 The main source for Zeno’s paradoxes is Aristotle, Physica, VI, ix, 239b–240a. This passage and all other relevant sources are reported in [FV], I, 247–258. The paradoxes are discussed in [Heath: HGM], vol. I, pp. 271–283. 12 Reconstructions of this episode are based primarily on two sources. 13 If we construct a square whose side is made up of an odd number of points, say k, we can ask whether the number n of points of the diagonal is even or odd.

C . was the study of machines that, while carrying out work, could be thought of as if the forces in question were at all times “almost in equilibrium”. That is indeed the case of a pulley that lifts a weight slowly. Problems regarding mechanical systems of that type (in particular the calculation of their mechanical advantage42 ) can be solved using Archimedean mechanics. Our “classical mechanics” is an improvement on the Archimedean theory because it subsumes it and can be applied in many cases where the preceding assumptions are not valid.

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Forgotten revolution by Lucio Russo


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