Why is the modern piano tuned using an equal tempered scale and
what has this got to do with logarithms?
The Pythagoreans noticed that nice simple ratios of string length
made nice sounds together.
The reader is invited to investigate changes (or permutations) in the ringing of church bells, illustrated by braid diagrams showing the order in which the bells are rung.
The scale on a piano does something clever : the ratio (interval) between any adjacent points on the scale is equal. If you play any note, twelve points higher will be exactly an octave on.
Use Euclid's algorithm to get a rational approximation to the
number of major thirds in an octave.
Using an understanding that 1:2 and 2:3 were good ratios, start
with a length and keep reducing it to 2/3 of itself. Each time that
took the length under 1/2 they doubled it to get back within range.
Show that it is rare for a ratio of ratios to be rational.
An article for students and teachers on symmetry and square dancing. What do the symmetries of the square have to do with a dos-e-dos or a swing? Find out more?
Try ringing hand bells for yourself with interactive versions of
Diagram 2 (Plain Hunt Minimus) and Diagram 3 described in the
article 'Ding Dong Bell'.