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Published 2004 Revised 2009
But to get jobs done most effectively and to make sure that goods were shared fairly, tools were needed. Some of the first mathematical tools man developed where to help them measure. They had to measure the passing of time, find ways to divide up pieces of land, develop a system to help keep track of the number of animals they owned and ways to measure grain so that they could exchange goods with each other.
Over time, foresters, builders, surveyors, map makers and scientists have created special tools to help them measure the height of trees, buildings and other tall structures very accurately. One of the tools is called a theodolite, the illustration shows a surveyor using one. You may have seen one on a building site. It is still important to measure tall trees - which are in fact the largest and oldest living organisms. Did you know that the tallest tree in the world is in Redwood National Park in California? It's as tall as a 30 storey building! That's about 360 feet!!
Can you identify the mathematicians?
When you think of spies and secret agents, you probably wouldn’t think of mathematics. Some of the most famous code breakers in history have been mathematicians.
This short article gives an outline of the origins of Morse code and its inventor and how the frequency of letters is reflected in the code they were given.