There comes a moment in most of our lives when we realize that some secrets of the universe will remain hidden from us—not because mankind hasn't discovered them, but because those secrets are encoded in complex math and physics problems that few of us have the talent or patience to understand.
But Beauty of Mathematics, a new video by Yann Pineill & Nicolas Lefaucheux, gives the mathematically challenged a peek into living equations. The animated triptych shows an equation on the left, its quantified schematics in the center, and its real world manifestation on the right. The video is like academic X-ray vision, but in reality, its inspiration was never math or science. It was beauty.
“We wanted to explore beauty with an angle as objective as possible, and we thought of science because it's something that you can’t really deny,” Pineill tells Co.Design. “So we looked further into it and we decided to point out the fact that everything can be explained with the same common language: mathematics.”
The clip above demonstrates the math behind forces like electricity, probability, and fractals. And there is indeed a particularly nuanced beauty captured by the effect. It’s the same difference phenomenon you’ll notice when attempting to read Shakespeare without translation and historical footnotes: You may enjoy the experience superficially, but as your mind engages with the logic below the surface, each nuanced syllable is anchored in so much more to appreciate.
“The point isn’t to be scientifically accurate—we probably are not—but more to show people that mathematics aren’t that abstract useless concept that we often find it to be when we study it at school,” Pineill admits. “It’s an awesome universal language that is the foundation of every science and thus the tool to understand fully every single thing around us.”
Yet even if the science here may not represent perfect science, one could imagine how this approach might scale to classroom education. Mathematics education is a constant delayed promise—this will be useful to you some day, kids. Were it presented as relevant in every moment of our day, we all may have been driven to understand more of the fundamental beauty behind mathematics.
[Hat tip: FlowingData]