Add new comment

Cosmic imagery - visual version

From the complexity of the snowflake, to the London tube map and the spiralling Andromeda galaxy, imagery has always been a vitally important ingredient of science. This week, Plus talks to John Barrow, professor of mathematics at Cambridge University and author of the new book Cosmic Imagery, about the images that have changed science, and how we have viewed science, over the centuries.

To download this enhanced podcast to your computer and for playing on your MP4 player, right-click on the link below on a PC and ctrl-click it on a Mac.




Image credits

  • Waterfall, lithograph by M.C. Escher's © 2008 The M.C. Escher Company, Netherlands. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
  • Cover of Fantastic Universe created by Alex Schomburg.
  • All images of the Mandelbrot set created by Wolfgang Beyer, reproduced under the GNU Free Documentation License.
  • All images of historic dice courtesy Arjan Verweij.
  • The animated Klein bottle was created by Konrad Polthier.
  • The tiling of three-dimensional hyperbolic space was created by Charles Gunn of the Technische Universität Berlin. It is a still from the movie Not Knot!, published by A K Peters Ltd.

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Want facts and want them fast? Our Maths in a minute series explores key mathematical concepts in just a few words.

  • As COP28, the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference, kicks off we look at how maths can help understand the climate crisis.

  • How do you create dramatic film out of mathematics? We find out with writer and director Timothy Lanzone.

  • Mathematics plays a central role in understanding how infectious diseases spread. This collection of articles looks at some basic concepts in epidemiology to help you understand this fascinating and important field, and set you up for further study.

  • Find out why the formula we use to work out conditional probabilities is true!

  • We talk about a play that explores the fascinating mathematical collaboration between the mathematicians GH Hardy and Srinivasa Ramanujan.