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Who came up with the convention of naming variables x and y, constants a, b and c (as in the equation y = ax^2 + bx + c), and using random greek letters to make math seem esoteric?
 2 years ago
 2 years ago
Who came up with the convention of naming variables x and y, constants a, b and c (as in the equation y = ax^2 + bx + c), and using random greek letters to make math seem esoteric?
 2 years ago
 2 years ago

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agdgdgdgwngoBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
oh and also using i, j, k, and m or n to denote integers
 2 years ago

agdgdgdgwngoBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
and using the letter u when applying the chain rule/integration by substitution
 2 years ago

JamesJBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.6
I did. It was a rainy afternoon, I was 5 and bored. I thought to myself: "I know! I'll standardize mathematical notation!" So I wrote it down with crayon on some very nice linen paper. My mother thought I was crazy, but little did she know. I posted it on a pinboard at my older brother's display at the science fair, and wouldn't you know it, a visiting professor of mathematics saw it, copied it, published it under his name, and the rest is history. But now you know the truth.
 2 years ago

Ishaan94Best ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
I like to use 't' first while substituting and then 'u'
 2 years ago

FoolForMathBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
and now we all know how old does James is ..
 2 years ago

agdgdgdgwngoBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
but I thought it was some fellow named 'Descartes'
 2 years ago

FoolForMathBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
This notation are being used more than 200 years ...
 2 years ago

FoolForMathBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
dude there was not single people ..
 2 years ago

Ishaan94Best ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
Descartes Rule of ......something I forgot the name I have a poor memory :(
 2 years ago

AditiMeowBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
Change your Memory =/
 2 years ago

FoolForMathBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
http://math.stackexchange.com/questions/24241/whydomathematiciansusesinglelettervariables
 2 years ago

JamesJBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.6
Indeed, there was not a single person. The process for this sort of this is very archaic, but people imitate other people and influential publications, and these things grow up over time. It's costly to change a convention once it's established in as much as the convention has value and conveys information; if you don't use the convention the then you need to explain your notation more often and the probability that what your writing will be widely read diminishes. I'm sure there are several very boring Masters theses and probably even a book or two written about this sort of thing.
 2 years ago

agdgdgdgwngoBest ResponseYou've already chosen the best response.0
Probably written by a fellow named 'Dan Brown' :D
 2 years ago
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