Dido's Problem
Episode 32 of Geometry

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Introduction to Scale
Episode 24 of Geometry
If you double the side-lengths of a shape, what happens to its area? If the shape is three-dimensional, what happens to its volume? In this lecture, you explore the concept of scale. You use this idea to re-derive one of our fundamental assumptions of geometry, the Pythagorean theorem, using the…
Mental Math and Paper
Episode 6 of Secrets of Mental Math
Sometimes we encounter math problems on paper in our daily lives. Even so, there are some rarely taught techniques to help speed up your calculations and check your answers when you are adding tall columns of numbers, multiplying numbers of any length, and more.
Exploring Geometric Constructions
Episode 26 of Geometry
Let's say you don't have a marked ruler to measure lengths or a protractor to measure angles. Can you still draw the basic geometric shapes? Explore how the ancient Greeks were able to construct angles and basic geometric shapes using no more than a straight edge for marking lines and…
Understanding Polygons
Episode 4 of Geometry
Shapes with straight lines (called polygons) are all around you, from the pattern on your bathroom floor to the structure of everyday objects. But although we may have an intuitive understanding of what these shapes are, how do we define them mathematically? What are their properties? Find out the answers…
Circle-ometry—On Circular Motion
Episode 16 of Geometry
How can you figure out the "height" of the sun in the sky without being able to measure it directly with a ruler? Follow the path of ancient Indian scholars to answer this question using "angle of elevation" and a branch of geometry called trigonometry. You learn the basic trig…
Tilings, Platonic Solids, and Theorems
Episode 28 of Geometry
You've seen geometric tiling patterns on your bathroom floor and in the works of great artists. But what would happen if you made repeating patterns in 3-D space? In this lecture, discover the five platonic solids! Also, become an artist and create your own beautiful patterns--even using more than one…
Explorations with Pi
Episode 22 of Geometry
We say that pi is 3.14159 ... but what is pi really? Why does it matter? And what does it have to do with the area of a circle? Explore the answer to these questions and more--including how to define pi for shapes other than circles (such as squares).
Trigonometry through Right Triangles
Episode 17 of Geometry
The trig identities you explored in the last lecture go beyond circles. Learn how to define all of them just using triangles (expressed in the famous acronym SOHCAHTOA). Then, uncover how trigonometry is practically applied by architects and engineers to measure the heights of buildings.
The Speed of Vedic Division
Episode 8 of Secrets of Mental Math
Vedic mathematics, which has been around for centuries, is extremely helpful for solving division problems: much more efficiently than the methods you learned in school. Learn how Vedic division works for dividing numbers of any length by any two-digit numbers.
Complex Numbers in Geometry
Episode 35 of Geometry
In lecture 6, you saw how 17th-century mathematician Rene Descartes united geometry and algebra with the invention of the coordinate plane. Now go a step further and explore the power and surprises that come from using the complex number plane. Examine how using complex numbers can help solve several tricky…
The Joy of Algebra
Episode 6 of The Joy of Mathematics
Arguably the most important area of mathematics, algebra introduces the powerful idea of using an abstract variable to represent an unknown quantity. This lecture demonstrates algebra's golden rule: Do unto one side of an equation as you do unto the other.
Angles and Pencil-Turning Mysteries
Episode 3 of Geometry
Using nothing more than an ordinary pencil, see how three angles in a triangle can add up to 180 degrees. Then compare how the experience of turning a pencil on a flat triangle differs from walking in a triangular shape on the surface of a sphere. With this exercise, Professor…