Cherry Saturday, November 23, 2019

Today is Fibonacci Day, which celebrates the Fibonacci sequence (which I know about because some crochet patterns are based on that numerical sequence) ever since Lenny Fibonacci figured it out in 1202. (Okay, it’s Leonard of Pisa, but that seems so formal.) (Also, he wasn’t the first to figure it out, India had been there first and called them Virahanka numbers, and even before that people had been muttering about it as far back as 200 BC, but Fibonacci was the first one to notify Europe, aka the white guys, so much like Columbus discovering America which had already been pretty much discovered by numerous natives already there, the guy with the connections in Europe gets the credit.). (Where was I?)

Right, Fibonacci numbers. They form a sequence in which each number is the sum of the two previous ones. As:

1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144 . . .

and so on.

Why is that important? Because it’s freaking everywhere in nature, one of the basic patterns of the universe, occurring way too often to be coincidence. There’s a plan here, people. It’s in the way a pine cone is arranged, in the way rabbits mate, in poetry, in computer algorithms, in tree branch patterns, and oh yeah, if you diagram it out, it forms the golden ratio:

I love stuff like this. Happy Fibonacci Day!

21 thoughts on “Cherry Saturday, November 23, 2019

  1. One of the buildings on the campus where my husband works has a big leaded glass window in the shape of that Fibonacci curve you displayed above.

    It’s so pretty.

  2. Engineer Husband loves the patterns in nature and how we see purpose and a plan in everything if we simply open our eyes to look. Right now, I’m too exhausted with moving stuff to keep my eyes open very long, although I know that I will appreciate the beauty of Fibonnaci and all that entails when I am in my own new home and able to breathe again. Happy Saturday, Jenny!

  3. Any German speaking Arghers out there? (I know there are German-speaking Arghers, I just don’t know if you’re around today).

    Google Translate gives me “partly cheerful” as the translation for “Teilis Heiter.” Is that right? It’s the color name for a self-striping yarn that’s part warm yellows and part blue-greens, so I can see why that would work, but sometimes Google misses on idioms.

    1. According to Cambridge German English heiter can mean cheerful, serene, humorous or light(not serious). I googled German idioms and nothing. But I barely made it through a year of Norwegian.

    2. Ummm…German speaker here. I’m guessing it’s “teils” not “teilis “ … “teils” means “partly” and the combination of “teils heiter” is used in weather reports as “partly sunny” (perhaps because sunny is cheerful?).

      Does this make sense for the yarn you are referring to?

  4. I love math nerd stuff, too. I fell in love with computer spreadsheets when they became available because they let me do some amazing things so much quicker than I had been doing them anyway with paper and pencil. I was working on a theorum for identifying prime numbers using perfect right triangles. I’m sure some Arab somewhere already did it, but I didn’t know it, so. You say European? All the good mathematicians were either Chinese, Greeks, or Arabs. Who, after all, invented zero and al-gebra? But you’re right – some white guy will appropriate their work.

  5. Threads magazine did an article on the Fibonnaci sequence/series with a view to what the length of a garment should be on an individual’s body. Issue 141. I found it fascinating because I knew WHEN something was right but I didn’t understand WHY.

  6. “…the first one to notify Europe aka, the white guy…” Hahahaha!

    I’ve only ever read the basics about the sequence and ratio. Must try to learn more.

    I can’t wait for school hols. I need them so badly. Not just for rest but to actually build myself up as an educator. I need to practice my chalk/white-board penmanship and learn how to incorporate more practical lessons into an overloaded curriculum in over crowded classes through a language barrier.

  7. Thank you so much for posting the diagram along with the description. I’ve only ever heard it described as a mathematical fact, but seeing it in squares makes it crystal clear. SO much more amazing.

  8. I have come across YouTube videos of people playing musical compositions based on the Fibonacci sequence. I never quite figured out how they translated the numbers into Notes, but it was interesting to listen to.

  9. Love Fibonacci numbers; the stained glass window souunds wonderful.

    Now, in honor of math, I will balance my checkbook.

  10. This post made me pull out Arcadia by Tom Stoppard because it’s about — among other things — mathematical patterns that indicate both future repetition and entropy.

    I love the interactions of art and math and science and humans.

  11. Late to the party, but if any of you math-minded Arghers (or the Arghersq who just like pretty things and good craftsmanship) need a cutting board, my husband is a woodworker & designed a Fibonacci board ( link). It’s really quite lovely. Once at a craft show in Chicago in the pouring rain (very bad show day) a woman across the street spotted it, shouted “FIBONACCI!!!!!” and sprinted into our tent. She bought it on the spot and biked home with it in her backpack (they weigh about nine
    pounds). She said she was an engineer and it was her very favorite mathematical sequence.

    It’s mine, too, but only because I can’t make any others!

      1. Thank you! He’s really talented. He made my engagement ring and the earrings I’m wearing today, too!

        As my grandmother says, “Isn’t it nice when they’re handy, dear?” 😆

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