Doing Math in Different Language

11192015, 04:18 AM
Post: #1




Doing Math in Different Language
I will be showing my ignorance with this post.
I am reading the book "The Martians of Science: Five Physicists Who Changed the Twentieth Century" by Istvan Hargittai. I am currently reading about the early upbringing of Theodore von Karman. As I was reading the following caught my attention: "As an adult, even though he could add and subtract in several languages, he could multiply only in Hungarian." I have never thought of numbers, addition, subtraction and multiplication as being "done in a particular language." I know there is a wide cross section of nationalities and languages here and that many of you are mathematicians. So my question is  do you do mathematics in a particular language or is mathematics just universal  independent of any particular language. Like I said, I am exposing my total ignorance on this. Thanks, Bill Smithville, NJ 

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