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← Mathematics: stupid and clever questions for people who understand

All About Meme's Avatar Jump to comment 24 by All About Meme

I'm still laughing at how d/dy outfoxed e to the x.

(cough)

Although it may be tangent to the actual discussion topic, Jos, I would be very interested in your take on how Isaac Newton discovered the derivative. For instance, what was the mathematical world like just prior to the year 1665, with respect to problems that are now child's play for the Calculus? Legend has it that an apple inspired the discovery of gravity, was there a similar "Eureka" moment that led to the birth of "fluxions"?

And please consider this request a compliment to your astounding erudition in a wide range of fields. I don't think many could attempt to divine the mind of an acknowledged genius like Newton, if you'll pardon the expression.

Tue, 08 May 2012 23:33:16 UTC | #940632