'Magic is No Magic': The Wonderful World of Simon Stevin

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WIT Press, 12 de nov. 2008 - 352 pàgines
This book gives a comprehensive picture of the activities and the creative heritage of Simon Stevin, who made outstanding contributions to various fields of science, in particular physics and mathematics. Among the striking spectrum of his ingenious achievements, it is worth emphasizing that Simon Stevin is rightly considered as the father of the system of decimal fractions as it is in use today. Stevin also urged the universal use of decimal fractions along with standardization in coinage, measures and weights. This was a most visionary proposal. Stevin was the first since Archimedes to make a significant new contribution to statics and hydrostatics. He truly was "homo universalis." The impact of Stevin's work has been multilateral and worldwide, including literature (William Shakespeare), science (from Christian Huygens to Richard Feynman), politics (Thomas Jefferson) and many other fields. Thomas Jefferson, together with Alexander Hamilton and Robert Morris, advocated introducing the decimal monetary units in the USA with reference to the book "De Thiende" by S. Stevin and in particular to the English translation of the book: "Disme: The Art of Tenths" by Robert Norton. In accordance with the title of this translation, the name of the first silver coin issued in the USA in 1792 was 'disme' (since 1837 the spelling changed to ('dime'). It was considered as a symbol of national independence of the USA.
 

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Continguts

Chapter One Simon Stevin and the Renaissance
1
Chapter Two Simon Stevin religious exile?
17
Chapter Three The man who invented the decimal system
55
Chapter Four Engineer and Inventor
79
Chapter Five Economist avant la lettre
111
Chapter Six Wonder en is gheen wonder
131
Memling and Stevin
147
Chapter Seven The link between Italian and French algebra
181
Chapter Eight Stevins contribution to the Dutch language
201
Chapter Nine Perspective
213
Chapter Eleven An unfinished composition
239
Explanation of the most important ideas in the Singconst
247
Chapter Twelve The resonance of Simon Stevin and his work
261
Later reactions of eminent scholars
281
Index of subjects
303
Copyright

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Sobre l'autor (2008)

Jozef T. Devreese is a professor in theoretical physics at the University of Antwerp and at the Technical University of Eindhoven. Guido Vanden Berghe is a professor in numerical mathematics at the University of Ghent. Both have numerous publications to their names, which also concern the history of science.

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