# Discussion 4.2 responses | Mathematics homework help

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First post:

My thoughts is that everything we have has always been there, but it just takes someone to discover it. Everything is waiting to be discovered, including math. Math can keep expanding just like everything else such as science and history. Perhaps it is called invention because one is the first to discover it. All our tools are in our head, one must just open up. Perhaps some rules were created for us, such as hours in a day, etc. I am not exactly on one side here, but I do think it has always been there, even if it is modified a bit.

Second post:

This question is hard to answer because the definition of invent and discover have very similar meanings.  The definition of invent is “to create or design (something that has not existed before); be the originator of.”  The definition of discover is to “find (something or someone) unexpectedly or in the course of a search.”  If something is invented that means somebody discovered it and then made it into an invention.  You can’t invent something without discovering it and you once you discover something, it becomes invented.

With mathematics, it seems like the symbols, equations, and rules are already there, just waiting to be discovered.  It has to do with a bunch of rules that you apply to real life situations.  I think with technology, it is invented.  Once math terms are discovered, people can invent technology around it.  For example, a calculator was invented and whoever invented had to put it together and let it know the equations for it to solve the problem.  There is problem more terminology out there that will eventually be discovered.   Also, there may be things and methods that will eventually be invented because of everything else that has already been invented.  Some things may have been discovered just by the human brain, such as a graph, once the term probabilities was invented, people found out you could draw a graph to indicate the same information.  I think all of this was meant to be discovered and invented because we use these methods for everything especially in cooperate America.  If we didn’t have these methods, charts, equations… etc. we wouldn’t be able to predict future finances.  It’s used in sciences and engineering work; it’s a necessity in life.  Some will ask if it’s already out there just waiting to be discovered, which you could ask that question for anything.  Is technology already out there waiting to be discovered, was the iphone 7 already out there but needed the iphone 6 to be discovered before.  Nobody knows what is out there until it is discovered or invented. (Not just discovered or not just invented)

After reading all the opinions, I still can’t just pick one side, so I decided to go with both, mathematics is discovered and invented.

Third post:

It took me a while to figure out what side to choose whether math was invented or discovered. I could agree with both but I am leaning more on the side of it being invented “unknowingly.” Math isn’t just something we can come across in a field and pick up and “discover it.” A time where I think it could’ve all started is when mankind started to trade goods. In order to keep up with their stuff. But I’m sure it goes way back in time like for instance- time. People had to keep up with time and the year and so forth for the records. As mankind evolutionized so did math amongst other things. It was a creation with room for growth and I believe it’s honestly endless because it can be incorporated in so many things. We are very curious beings and for that people are not going to stop trying to take math further than it already has because somehow we have made it a way of life and incorporated it in so many areas where it’s necessary to be used.

Fourth post:

Its pretty hard to say whether or not math is “discovered” or “invented”; but I think its a little safer to say that mathematics is discovered rather than invented only because when you think of an invention, you think of someone putting objects together to form an overall outcome of something. Usually when someone invents something it typically consist of the same concepts whereas with mathematics you have many different concepts that all work in different ways for a different outcome. Although I believe it could be discovered I still ask myself, “If its discovered where exactly does it come from? Where did it originate?” Dinosaurs were discovered but we know that they were actually living on earth and became extinct, but where are these mathematical concepts coming from?

fifth post :

After a little bit of deep thought about Mathematics as a discovery or an invention, I have decided to take a side, if for anything other than the practice or a sound argument.  I’d like to believe that Math was discovered. Since the beginning of time man has needed a way to survive.  Humans needed (and still do currently) food, shelter, water to name a few.  I will use the idea of Applied Mathematics.

Humans keeping track of the seasons, moon phases, and creating decorative shapes seem to be the earliest forms of math.  If the moon for example is setting each evening, they could have a way to know by tallying.  Also the Chinese used a number system that was a bit more complex than that of the rest of the world at the time.  They needed a way to measure weights of food for trading. (Storyofmathematics.com)

It seems that mainly math was used for monetary purposes even if money had not existed yet.  It could be used to trade a certain quantity of items. The reason why people would need to monitor seasons, would be obvious, for vegetation. It seems like the only and main reason for math, is money.  Needing to monitor moon phases or setting geometric shapes for decorative purposes seems more for enjoyment and or religion. Also the philosophical question of ‘Who Am I, and Why Am I Here’? comes to mind.

According to Plato, Math is very real, regardless if we are there to witness it or not.  Math would exist on other planets with no life on them.  Math could explain phenomena in the universe.  Perhaps humans are not to the level to where we can fully understand the most advanced Mathematical concepts. Perhaps we will use our own knowledge to destroy ourselves.

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