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Topic: Rheticus
Replies: 8   Last Post: Feb 11, 2007 6:37 PM

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David Pengelley

Posts: 61
Registered: 12/3/04
Re: Rheticus
Posted: Jan 12, 2007 12:33 PM
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On Fri, 12 Jan 2007, Underwood Dudley wrote:

> Dennis Danielson) that mentions his tables of trigonometric functions.
> Rheticus calculated them to _fifteen_ decimal places. Whatever for?


At the Joint Meetings in New Orleans this week someone gave a talk in
which, if my fading memory is correct, they quoted from a mathematical
diary in which the writer wrote he had to go back to Rheticus' tables to
get the accuracy he needed in a calculation. It might have been June
Barrow-Green's talk on a pre WWI diary of a Cambridge student, or Robin
Wilson's on Hardy's Oxford years. Does anyone remember? In any case,
this seems to show that Rheticus' tables were still a real resource in the
early 20th century! Of course this doesn't answer Woody's question about
why Rheticus did this.

David



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