Thursday, October 22, 2020

Diocles: Greek mathematician

Diocles was a philosopher, priest, an emperor, mathematician and geometer. He was a contemporary of Apollonius of Perga.

This famous mathematician was most popularly known for his work in the sub classification of geometry. Diocles studied the shape of a concave mirror, such as the spherical and parabolic mirror.

His name is associated with the geometric curve called the Cissoid of Diocles. This method was used in solving the problem of doubling the cube.

A cubic curve invented by Diocles in about 180 BC in connection with his attempt to duplicate the cube by geometrical methods. The name "cissoid" was first mentioned by Geminus in the first century B.C.

He studied the cissoid in his attempt to solve the doubling the cube problem of finding the length of the side of a cube having volume twice that of a given cube. Fermat and Roberval constructed the tangent in 1634.

He also studied the problem of Archimedes to cut a sphere by a plane in such a way that the volumes of the segments shall have a given ratio. After Archimedes' death, Diocles wrote a treatise On Burning Mirrors, devices which reflect the sun's rays to a point so as to cause burning.

In his Burning Mirrors, Diocles discusses a number of geometrical problems, including that concern the reflection of solar rays.
Diocles: Greek mathematician

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