rational numbers

Back to basics

Professor Robert Sinclair illustrates one of his examples of a biological system (the fruit fly eye) which exhibits tendencies towards both deterministic and stochastic development…

In an article published in Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience by Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University’s Professor Robert Sinclair, he suggests that there still is a place in science in modern times for the interpretation of results using rational numbers or simple ratios. In a time where supercomputers dominate scientific analysis, Prof. Sinclair argues that there is not enough attention being paid to the basic approaches to science of the past, which were able to profoundly illuminate our understanding of the natural world through the simplification of very complex topics and systems. Mendel (1822-1884) did this through his discoveries about heredity in plants, describing some of the most important principles in genetics through very simple numerical observations. The connection between mathematics and various other scientific disciplines, even the roles simple rational numbers may play, is something that Prof. Sinclair believes to be still potentially important in modern science.

Read More