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History and Philosophy of Mathematics

larger image of http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk:80/~history/

image of http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk:80/~history/

MacTutor History of Mathematics

This site, hosted by the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, features 1000 or so biographies. The site includes quotes, this day in mathematics history, classic curves, and mathematics in various cultures.

larger image of http://galileo.rice.edu/

image of http://galileo.rice.edu/

The Galileo Project

The life and times of Galileo is explored in-depth at the Rice University site. Of particular interest is the information about his own laboratory and instruments. Maps, timelines and excerpts from the famous trial are also provided.

A very thorough view of the history of this period which could be a model for other studies in later eras.

larger image of http://www.storyofmathematics.com/

image of http://www.storyofmathematics.com/

The Story of Mathematics

This site is as an easy-to-use summary of the major mathematicians and the developments of mathematical thought over the centuries. The author, Luke Mastin, introduces some of the major thinkers and some of the most important advances in mathematics, without getting too technical or getting bogged down in too much detail, either biographical or computational.

larger image of http://catalogue.museogalileo.it/

image of http://catalogue.museogalileo.it/

Museo Galileo

Part of the Museum of the History of Science in Florence, Italy, this site is a virtual copy exhibits dedicated to Galileo Galilei. You can view recreations of Galileo's actual facilities, details of the tools he invented or inspired, videos, biographies and a glossary of terms.

larger image of http://www.storyofmathematics.com/islamic.html

image of http://www.storyofmathematics.com/islamic.html

Islamic Mathematics

While not well covered today, while Europe was in the middle of the Dark Ages, mathematics flourished in Islamic areas including Africa and the Middle East. During this time, they made significant contributions towards mathematics, drawing on and fusing together the mathematical developments of both Greece and India.

larger image of http://www.nsta.org/recommends/ViewProduct.aspx?ProductID=14597

image of http://www.nsta.org/recommends/ViewProduct.aspx?ProductID=14597

Lost Discoveries: The Ancient Roots of Modern Science

The history of science is often overlooked in schools so many developments are presented out of context. NSTA reviews this book by Dick Teresi, where he shares his "...pleasure of discovering mountains of unappreciated human industry, four thousand years of scientific discoveries by peoples I had been taught to disregard."

The history of science begins much earlier than most of us think, and teachers, who often look to the Greeks and Europeans for the roots of modern science, need to greatly revise how they teach it. This examination of mathematics, astronomy, cosmology, physics, geology, chemistry, and technology, uncovers information from ancient civilizations including Sumeria, Egypt, China, India, Africa, and Arab nations. The accomplishments of early scientists are described in a clear, understandable fashion.

larger image of http://www.cut-the-knot.org/index.shtml

image of http://www.cut-the-knot.org/index.shtml

Cut-the-Knot

Cut-the-knot, an award-winning site, explores geometry, algebra, and special topics like probability. The best aspect of this site is the reflective perspective of its developer and his dose of philosophy of math.

While the interactive examples no longer function (Java is no longer available on most browsers), the explanations and descriptions are well written and worth checking out.

History and mathematics usually remain quite separate in most curricula. These sites correct that view and by showing the evolution of thought could stimulate students, even below college level, to imagine the next stage in the development of mathematics.

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