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Dublin by Numbers

Statue of mathematician William Rowan Hamilton at the entrance to Government Buildings (left)

Our next project is a fun mathematics walking tour of Dublin for families. And we’d love to hear what you think should be in the tour.

For instance, we’ll be looking at numbers all over the city, from bus routes to car number plates, and imagining what the world would be like if numbers had never been invented.  We might also include proportion in architecture (such as the golden ratio in Georgian buildings), and the curve of a dome.

One of the things we want to celebrate are some famous Irish mathematicians — especially William Rowan Hamilton who invented a new type of algebra in 1843, that is now a cornerstone of computer games and graphics — and his statue is at the entrance to Government Buildings.

The audio guided stroll around the city will come with an activity sheet for families, packed with things to do as you explore mathematics in and around the city.

But what do you think we should include in our tour?  We would love to get your ideas — and if we use your suggestion, we’ll send you a small thank you: a souvenir boxed edition of our audio guided tours to the National Botanic Gardens.

Send us an e-mail with your ideas to hello@ingeniousireland.ie or drop by our Facebook page.

We’re delighted that this project is being part-funded by Discover Science & Engineering.  If your organisation supports maths, and would like to support this project, we’d love to hear from you too.


6 Responses to Dublin by Numbers

  1. Stewart Curry June 27, 2011 at 12:33 pm #

    You can’t mention William Rowan Hamilton without talking a walk to Broom Bridge http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broom_Bridge

    • mary June 27, 2011 at 12:38 pm #

      You’re so right! And we plan to include the annual Hamilton Walk to Broom Bridge as a ‘tangent’ to the main city centre route.

  2. Arthur Doohan June 27, 2011 at 1:40 pm #

    The Campanile in TCD has an interesting ‘perfect arch’ (composed around two ‘unit circles’)…would be a good place to kick off a dialogue re maths&architecture…aslo the maths involved in vaulting….with the vault of the ‘buttery’ as an exemplar….

    • mary June 27, 2011 at 1:42 pm #

      And, appropriately, right beside a statue of Sammon!

      We might need to negotiate access with TCD, but a nice suggestion for the arch we might use.

      Thank you.

  3. iamreddave June 28, 2011 at 10:17 am #

    Episode 17 – Ithaca

    “at relaxed walking pace they crossed both the circus before George’s church diametrically, the chord in any circle being less than the arc which it subtends.”

    • mary June 28, 2011 at 10:30 am #

      “What parallel courses did Bloom and Stephen follow returning?”

      Yes, it would be nice to try and include something Joycean — thanks for the suggestion.