JOHN WALLIS EARLY LIFE AND SCHOOLING John was born at Ashford on November 22, 1616 He became interested in mathematics after reading his brother’s arithmetic book and with his help, mastering the subject He was sent to Emmanuel College, Cambridge to become a doctor where he took an “ act ” on the doctrine of the circulation of blood CONTINUED… No one at this time could teach him math , so he took classes like ethics , anatomy, and medicine He spent 1631-1632 at Martin Holbeach’s school in Felsted, Essex,where he learned Latin, Greek and Hebrew In 1649 he was appointed to the Savilian chair of geometry at Oxford CONTINUED… He received his Masters in 1940 and in the same year he was appointed chaplain and Hedingham, Essex and in London “Wallis contributed substantially to the origins of calculus and was the most influential English mathematician before Newton. He studied the works of Kepler, Cavalieri, Roberval, Torricelli and Descartes, and then introduced ideas of the calculus going beyond that of these authors.”(O’Conner, 2002) INTEGRAL CALCULUS He proved that x^0, x^-1, x^-2… was the same as 1, 1/x, 1/x^2 and that x^1/2 was equal to the square root of x… In his book Arithmetica infinitorum he established the equation ALGEBRA He published Algebra and in it he showed the relationship between space and time with the equation S= vt GEOMETRY Wallis has been credited with the proof of the Pythagorean theorem, but 6 centuries earlier it was said that an Arab had proved it wit all 6 triangles. We don’t know if that is true, so Wallis is still partially credited ANALYITICAL GEOMETRY “In 1655, Wallis published a treatise on conic sections in which they were defined analytically. This was the earliest book in which these curves are considered and defined as curves of the second degree. It helped to remove some of the perceived difficulty and obscurity of René Descartes' work on analytic geometry.”( wikipedia) HUMAN CALCULATOR “One aspect of Wallis's mathematical skills has not yet been mentioned, namely his great ability to do mental calculations. He slept badly and often did mental calculations as he lay awake in his bed. One night he calculated the square root of a number with 53 digits in his head. In the morning he dictated the 27 digit square root of the number, still entirely from memory. It was a feat which was rightly considered remarkable, and Henry Oldenburg, the Secretary of the Royal Society, sent a colleague to investigate how Wallis did it. It was considered important enough to merit discussion in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of 1685.” (wikipedia) CONCLUSION John Wallis was a very smart man, from learning multiple languages, to studying many forms of math and writing books. He was considered the best mathematician before Newton… Newton ever used much of his work. CITATIONS Rouse Ball, W.W.. "John Walis (1616-1703)." maths. 19 May 2009 <http://www.maths.tcd.ie/pub/HistMath/People/Wallis/RouseBall/RB_Wall is.html>. "john wallis." wikimedia. 4/24/09. 19 May 2009 <http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:John_Wallis.jpg>. O'Conner, JJ. "john wallis." Gap-system. 2002. 19 May 2009 <http://www.gap-system.org/~history/Biographies/Wallis.html>. "john wallis." wikipedia. May 6, 2009. 20 May 2009 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Wallis>.