December BEST Cinematics Night

December 2017 | BEST Cinematics Night

The Man Who Knew Infinity (2015)




Date: November 8, 5-9pm

Room: Z808

Organisers: Naomi Moy and Benno Torgler




Our journey brings us now to pure mathematics. The December movie is The Man Who Knew Infinity. Around January 31, 1913 a mathemati-cian named G. H. Hardy received a package of papers with a cover let-ter that began: “Dear, I beg to introduce myself to you as a clerk in the Accounts Department of the Port Trust Office at Madras on a salary of only £20 per annum. I am now about 23 years of age… Being poor, if you are convinced that there is anything of value I would like to have my theorems published…. Being inexperienced I would very highly value any advice you give me. Requesting to be excused for the trouble I give you. I remain, Dear Sir, Yours truly, S. Ramanujan”.

We will look at the human story behind Srinivasa Ramanujan and take the opportunity to discuss aspects such as intuition, imagination, and different kind of mathematical minds. It may also be worth to look at Hardy’s small book entitled A Mathematician’s Apology.