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date: 17 October 2021

p. 1096. … and beyond, to complex thingslocked

p. 1096. … and beyond, to complex thingslocked

  • Glen Van Brummelen


‘ … and beyond, to complex things’ first considers the Taylor series for the exponential function. One of the most famous, yet enigmatic, numbers in mathematics, e is an irrational number equal to 2.718281828. … Exponential functions deal with the phenomena of growth and decay. As calculus was starting to become established, curious parallels between the apparently disparate worlds of trigonometry and exponential functions were starting to appear. Imaginary numbers, Euler’s formula, and Euler’s identity are discussed along with the Argand diagram, De Moivre’s formula, hyperbolic trigonometric functions, and the catenary curve. Imaginary numbers are now at the heart of science and technology, and are used in the study of electromagnetic waves, cellular and wireless technologies, and fluid dynamics.

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