Amazing Problem Solving Capabilities of Math

Here is an often quoted statement by an American Mathematician S. Gudder

“The essence of math is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple”.

Math started as a problem solver and it is a great way of viewing school math. See the article entitled How Math Began.

Math is of enormous practical use. Living without math in prehistoric times was uncivilized, thoughtless and savage. It developed naturally as a necessity as living became more and more civilized.

Math provides solution to problems from everyday to business to scientific.

Word problems in school math cover lot of everyday uses of math. Some simple business and scientific uses of math are also covered in school math. This shows how greatly useful math symbols and its logic are. Examples of math symbols are number symbols such as 1, 1.5 etc. and operation symbols such as +, –, × etc. Without math, solutions to such problems would be either impossible or very hard.

Many math learners are good at thinking and reasoning skills but they have problems with math symbols and its subtle reasoning.

Is the nature around us simple? In many situations, it is far from simple even to probe the nature for scientific knowledge. Costly laboratories and equipment may be needed for scientific experiments.

Math has no laboratory or experiment.

Word problems have similar solutions. Many of them are solved using same logic of simple algebra equations.

While solving such problems, appreciate how simple number logic and shape logic rescue the situation so perfectly and so gracefully.

Here is another quote to end this article. It is by John von Neumann – a Hungarian-American mathematician

“If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realize how complicated life is”.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s