## Golden Number: research paper...

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• G Vincent
Message 1 of 2 , Feb 29, 2004

Vincent

• Vincent, excellent link but I just want to re-send it because it didn t make it to non-html digest folks: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/week203.html Something
Message 2 of 2 , Mar 2, 2004
Vincent, excellent link but I just want to re-send it because it didn't make
it to non-html digest folks:

http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/week203.html

Something I learned from Dan and found confirmed here:

"These days, the number G is called the Golden Number, the Golden Ratio, or
the Golden Section. It's often denoted by the Greek letter Phi, after the
Greek sculptor Phidias. Phidias helped design the Parthenon - and supposedly
packed it full of golden rectangles, to make it as beautiful as possible."

"However, don't be fooled! The charm of the golden number tends to attract
kooks and the gullible - hence the term "fool's gold". You have to be
think ancient Greeks ran around in togas philosophizing about the "golden
ratio" and calling it "Phi", you're wrong. This number was named Phi after
Phidias only in 1914, in a book called The Curves of Life by the artist
Theodore Cook. And, it was Cook who first started calling 1.618... the
golden ratio. Before him, 0.618... was called the golden ratio! Cook dubbed
this number "phi", the lower-case baby brother of Phi.

In fact, the whole "golden" terminology can only be traced back to 1826,
when it showed up in a footnote to a book by one Martin Ohm, brother of
Georg Ohm, the guy with the law about resistors. Before then, a lot of
people called 1/G the "Divine Proportion". And the guy who started that was
Luca Pacioli, a pal of Leonardo da Vinci who translated Euclid's Elements.
In 1509, Pacioli published a 3-volume text entitled Divina Proportione,
advertising the virtues of this number. Some people think da Vinci used the
divine proportion in the composition of his paintings. If so, perhaps he got
the idea from Pacioli. "

1914. hmmm...

> Subject: Golden Number: research paper...
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> G
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> Vincent
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