## Adding a dimension: seventeen essays on the history of science |

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Page 63

Thus, the Greeks accepted no number smaller than

than nothing? To them, consequently, the equation x + 5 = 3 had no solution.

How can you add 5 to any number and have 3 as a result? Even if you added 5 to

...

Thus, the Greeks accepted no number smaller than

**zero**. How can there be lessthan nothing? To them, consequently, the equation x + 5 = 3 had no solution.

How can you add 5 to any number and have 3 as a result? Even if you added 5 to

...

Page 64

Consequently, in the equation x + 5 = 3, x can be set equal to —2, where the

minus sign indicates a number less than

negative numbers," from a Latin word meaning "to deny," so that the very name

carries the ...

Consequently, in the equation x + 5 = 3, x can be set equal to —2, where the

minus sign indicates a number less than

**zero**. Such numbers are called "negative numbers," from a Latin word meaning "to deny," so that the very name

carries the ...

Page 67

Just imagine a horizontal line crossed by a vertical line and call the point of

intersection

from that

the line ...

Just imagine a horizontal line crossed by a vertical line and call the point of

intersection

**zero**. Now you have four lines radiating out at mutual right anglesfrom that

**zero**point. You can equate those lines with the four kinds of numbers. Ifthe line ...

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### Contents

TFormation | 2 |

One Ten Buckle My Shoe | 14 |

Varieties of the Infinite | 27 |

Copyright | |

15 other sections not shown

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### Common terms and phrases

agglutinate alcohol Alpha Centauri angstrom units antisubstance astronomer blood type called carbon atoms century chemist chemistry circle circumference complex numbers corpuscles decimal diameter digits discovered earth electromagnetic electromagnetic radiation electromagnetic spectrum endlessness equal equation fact Fibonacci fraction frequency German gigameters googol googolplex grams gravity Greek hydrogen atoms imaginary numbers infinite number infinity instance integers irrational numbers Jupiter kilometers large numbers Lavoisier length mass mathematician matter measurements Mendel Mersenne Mersenne primes metric system Michelson miles molecule motion moving Newton Nobel Prize octave ordinary numbers oscillate oxygen parsecs phlogiston phlogiston theory physicist picometer planet prime radiation rays real numbers red dwarf represent rust scientists serum Sirius solar system solutions square root stars straightedge and compass subatomic particles suppose ten-based theory tion transverse waves trillion twelve-based system two-based system value of TT velocity of light wave form wavelength weight word zero