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On This Day

  • 12-8-1632

    Musician and mathematician Albert Girard died in Leiden, Holland. He introduced the abbreviations sin, tan, and sec for the trigonometric functions.

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    Albert Girard
    Trigonometric Functions
  • 12-8-1831

    "Prof. Noether's lectures (she is a woman--a member of a noted mathematical family) are also excellent .... Prof. Noether thinks fast and talks faster. As one listens, one must also think fast--and that is always excellent training. Furthermore, thinking fast is one of the joys of mathematics." - Saunders MacLane, then a student at Gottingen, to his mother.

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    Emmy Noether
    Saunders MacLane
  • 12-8-1864

    Logician George Boole died from a feverish cold he got after walking two miles in a drenching rain to teach his class. He was a professor at Queen's College in Cork, Ireland.

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    George Boole