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The Code   Season 1, Episode 1

  • Episode Name:
    Numbers
  • Air date:
    7/27/2011
  • Summary:
    Marcus looks at how prime numbers can explain the unique 13-year life-cycle of the periodic cicada, how 12th-century medieval clergy used simple number ratios to create cathedrals that they felt mirrored God's creation, and why the breaking of these harmonies helps us understand why sirens are so effective at getting our attention. Next, Marcus uses another ratio – pi – to predict a Brighton fisherman's biggest-ever catch. Exploring the bizarre world of imaginary numbers, Marcus looks at how the radar used by air traffic controllers is only made possible because of a number that doesn't exist, and describes the surprising link between the structure of the nautilus shell and Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation. [+]more
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