Happy Fibonacci Day!
Today, November 23 is Fibonacci Day, because the numbers are in the Fibonacci sequence of 1, 1, 2, 3. So when written in month and date format it forms the sequence that can be charted out into a pattern.
The Fibonacci pattern appears frequently in like the branching in trees, leaves on a stem, family trees of honeybees, flower petals, spirals of a sunflower and so on.
The sequence is named for Leonardo Fibonacci, a Medieval mathematician who lived in Pisa from around 1170 -1250 ad.
Starting with 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, the Fibonacci sequence is created by adding up the two previous numbers to get the next one.
The sequence is used in computing, stock trading, and architecture and design.
Once we discovered the sequence, it started showing up everywhere. Nature is full of Fibonacci patterns, from DNA to hurricanes, leading some to dub the Fibonacci sequence “nature’s secret code.”
Another major contribution he made was "nothing."
He helped introduce the zero to the western world.
Born to an Italian merchant, the young Leonardo traveled to North Africa with his father, where he was exposed to the Hindu-Arabic numeral system. The system, which includes zero and limits itself to 10 symbols, is much more agile and flexible compared to the unwieldy Roman numeral system.
In 1202, Fibonacci published “Liber Abaci”, introducing Europe to the Hindu-Arabic system and his now-famous sequence.
The website here
suggests a number of ways to celebrate the day including
Plan a Fibonacci feast.
The Fibonacci sequence occurs very frequently in common fruits and vegetables and when prepared together, these foods make for a fun meal! Prepare things like artichokes, pineapple, Romanesco and pomegranate to see how the sequence occurs in nature.
Take a Fibonacci-inspired nature walk.
Depending on where you live, you may be able to easily discover Fibonacci sequence in flowers, trees, and much more. Take a nature walk and inspect things like pine cones, ferns, daisies, sunflowers, and snails, since all of these things are made up of Fibonacci numbers.
Seek out the Fibonacci sequence in famous works of art.
Many famous works of art employ the golden spiral or golden rectangles (based on the Fibonacci sequence). Art works like “The Great Wave” by Katsushika Hokusai or many of Mondrian’s square-filled paintings are great examples of the sequence in action!
To learn more about math and history contact us at the Conway Public Library's Henney History Room. We offer a number of free programs for schools and community groups related to the subject.