What does mathematics mean to me and my life? I discuss how my journey with mathematics has led me to this point in life, and how it will continue to influence all of us moving into the future. I assert that a good understanding of maths is essential in order to advance our society to a higher, better level.
For me, mathematics has always been the question ‘how?’. Science classes always bothered themselves with ‘why?’, and that’s interesting enough, but I wanted a deeper understanding than that. Mathematics provides the tools we need to reason with our environment, and to come to truly understand the world that we live in.
From a young age, I was always been an avid learner. Constantly asking my parents and teachers questions about everything, longing to understand it all. This transformed itself into a love of creating and solving puzzles, which has led me to where I am today: studying mathematics. Translating from learning to count, into dealing with addition and multiplication, then algebra and calculus, and now into my university studies of computational mathematics, I never stopped with my love of mathematics.
Of course, my life hasn’t been just mathematics, I wouldn’t like to limit myself like that. I tried my best in all my subjects, made friends, played games and sports, the whole works. In spite of myself, I’ve always found myself drawn towards a logic-based approach to all things. The deductive mindset that comes along with an investment in mathematics has benefited my life across the board.
My life-long pipe dream concerns itself entirely with simulation; can we simulate all facets of life, and use that to our advantage? Imagine a world in which we truly had a sandbox for the laws of the universe, how useful and fun would that be? Not only the STEM fields would be benefited by that, but health, arts, and humanities too. The new advent of longer, happier lives, coupled with new digital media and a better understanding of our roots. Practically a utopia.
But we still have a while to go until we reach that sort of stage, if we are to reach that stage. Life is filled with endless puzzles to solve, boundless mysteries. All that I can hope for is that me and my mathematics can drag us one or two (or maybe more?) steps closer to that end goal.
Queensland University of Technology