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Any interesting application of mathematics?

  1. Dec 15, 2014 #1
    I have to do a work about one of the many applications of mathematics. I have to study the math behind a certain subject and use matlab to solve some kind of problem associated with the topic.
    I am on the final year of graduation and I thought of doing about optics, fractals, relativity or paintings/architecture (perspective, etc.). I wouldn't like to spend a lot of time on this and I thought of doing about optics or something related to physics as I am in the final year of gaduation.
    Do you know any interesting application of mathematics? (doesn't have to be connected to physics)

    Thank you.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2014
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 15, 2014 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Depends on your definition of "interesting".
    Does "all of physics" count? The other sciences use mathematics a lot, too.

    The text I am writing here is processed on a system that uses a lot of mathematics to process it, then uses mathematics to encrypt it, more mathematics to convert it to a format that is easier to transmit via the internet, even more mathematics to find the right target server, where it gets decrypted and stored in a database that has some fancy algorithms to find the right posts out of ~5 millions as fast as possible to send them to you.
  4. Dec 15, 2014 #3


    Staff: Mentor

    I sat in once on a talk about how music can beencoded on CDs so that errors can be detected, and in some cases, corrected. The technology involved makes us of vector spaces of dimension 16 and higher and the distance between vectors in that space.
  5. Dec 15, 2014 #4
    I know mathematics is in the base of the pyramid. I was looking for some peculiar mathematical applications, which may be surprising for most of graduated students (or even for those who have a master degree/phd in mathematics/physics/etc).
    Mark44 do you know any paper or book that has any kind of approach of what you just said?

    Thank you for your comments.
  6. Dec 15, 2014 #5
    Math in music
  7. Dec 15, 2014 #6


    Staff: Mentor

    I don't know of any off the top of my head. The talk I went to was about 30 years ago. I would do a search for something like "error correction in digital music recording" - something along those lines.

    With regard to pyramids, I saw a book one time about the pyramids in Egypt. It started out with some interesting points, but soon descended into numerological nonsense.
  8. Dec 16, 2014 #7

    Stephen Tashi

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    The Society For Industrial And Applied Mathematics (SIAM) publishes a newsletter (SIAM News) with articles about interesting applications of mathematics. You might find an idea by browsing the Archives online at http://www.siam.org/news/
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