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A Mathematical Nature Walk by John Adam

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images In the “playground”

(just to get our feet wet…)

It is the mark of an instructed mind to rest satisfied with the degree of precision which the nature of the subject permits and not to seek an exactness where only an approximation of the truth is possible.—Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics

We have set the scene for our nature walks, so let’s get started.

 

In this section, we ’ll just attempt some “applied arithmetic” and a little bit of algebra. Even if some of the following estimation problems could be calculated exactly (and most cannot), that is not the point here: most things cannot be computed exactly, and frequently all that is necessary is ...

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