Thursday, August 5, 2010

The concept of zero

During World War II a Japanese Zero fighter plane crashed onto Aboriginal land in Northern Australia.  That started me thinking about the mathematical concept of zero.

Historically, the concept of zero as a number did not exist in western mathematics until it was introduced from the east via Spain, I believe around the 11th century.  I wondered if the concept had originated way, way back in a culture like that of traditional Indigenous Australians.

It's worth remembering that modern technology is made possible only by 1 and 0, on and off, west and east, coming together.

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As I walk by the river or sit in my tiny garden, not thinking of anything in particular, thoughts sometimes seep into my brain. If you'd like to read my seepage, here it is ...