Numbers are written signs or symbols for a particular quantity. The Arabic
symbols for numbers are the ones we use for our mathematical work and they have
become part and parcel of the world of numbers. The Roman symbols for numbers
use the letters of the alphabet. The Chinese use strokes and the number of
strokes depict the number system.
Do you know that some students have an illogical fear of numbers ? Mention
Arithmetic or Mathematics and they go **berserk**
!. I was the **bane** of my Mathematics teacher.
I could never understand why two minuses make a plus. It is most illogical but
ask a mathematical **buff**, and the genius
would raise his eyebrow, look at me as if I am from outer space, an alien and
from then on, would deem it beneath his dignity to speak to me.
Despite my fear of Mathematics, I had a fascination for numbers. It must be
due to all the card games I played with grandpa. Some educationists did say that
exposing a young child to number card games would make him a gifted child. There
has to be a short circuit somewhere for me not to lay claim to such a
prediction. For all I know, it is some old wives' tale. However, I did get a
distinction in Mathematics at Form Three. It was either the paper was such an
easy one or it was sheer good luck. Seriously, I think it was the gem of a
Mathematics teacher. he erased my irrational fears of numbers and patiently and
laboriously taught me the basics of Mathematics. I made it.
From my personal experience, I believe that if a child is given the right
grounding in the basics, the child would be able to do singularly well in the
subject. Everyone is teachable and given the right opportunity, everyone can
learn to add, minus, multiply and understand all the funny equations and
formulae.
As in teaching the 3Rs of reading, writing and arithmetic, so too the same
principles are applicable in the finer rudiments of mathematical understanding.
A basic knowledge of mathematics is necessary in this world where everything
has to do with numbers.
There are the queue numbers at banks, offices, and seat numbers for buses,
trains and planes. Even hotel rooms are numbered, so too are the floors except
that in certain high-rise buildings the 13th floor does not exist.
Our identification papers are numbered and not remembering them can be rather
embarrassing. From MyKad to passports, birth certificates to registration
numbers for cars, land titles, admission numbers -- all documents are printed
with numbers. To the government we are figures, just numbers. To the police, we
are statistics in accident cases. If numbers do not exist, the world would be
terribly chaotic. Therefore, to make our life a pleasure, try to remember all
the important numbers. It has been known that if your number is stolen and used
by an impersonator, you might lose your identity.
It is no wonder that science fiction has turned to using palm prints, eye
iris and access entry code to prevent impersonation and false entry into maximum
security buildings. However, everything can be cloned so nothing is tamper proof
or security proof.
The series "Numbers" illustrates how the various variables can be used to
predict answer and solutions to crimes. A mathematical genius utilizes all the
variables and promulgates a theory and proves the hypothesis right.
As long as man is a thinking individual whereby he does not allow the robot
to manipulate and control his life, numbers will continue to dominate the fabric
of daily life. |