Mickaël Launay, or mathematics explained with disconcerting simplicity

This popularizer, whose YouTube channel, Micmaths, is followed by more than 560,000…

This popularizer, whose YouTube channel, Micmaths, is followed by more than 560,000 people, received the Saintonge Academy Grand Prix on October 9, a “beautiful” award that highlights a multidisciplinary approach that, in his words, is ” the very meaning of my practice, the dialogue between knowledge”. His “Dictionary of lovers of mathematics” (Plon) shows that mathematics blurs the boundaries between disciplines, while spontaneously, to understand the world, we tend to put everything in categories.

oyster and spaghetti

To drive out this pervasive mathematics, Rochelais can call on the oyster, the spaghetti, the Eiffel Tower, a soccer field, or even an umbrella as proof support (his jubilant “Umbrella Theorem” demonstrates that one can also approach mathematics with derision). Things in front of you: “There is no need for complex theories, just look at it the right way. It’s a bit like a painter who sees lights, colors that you don’t see, because it doesn’t occur to you to react to certain details.

“I have the best part, I choose my subjects, I show accessible, nice things. The problem with teaching is that students are taught things whose meaning or applications they do not understand. It doesn’t motivate them. When you want to make music, you make an effort to learn music theory, even if it is difficult. ” Music ? Here. Pythagoras would have been one of the first to invent scales. The guitar ? The placement of the strings responds to a mathematical sequence. “Mathematics, in addition to its own interest, allows explaining other disciplines. »

Guitar ? The placement of the strings responds to a mathematical sequence

Now, if Launay explains Thales’ theorem with disconcerting simplicity, he can also persuade you that the simplest equation can turn out to be particularly complex: “6÷2 (1+2) = ? “. High school students, beware, there is a catch and two possible answers. Mathematics, exact sciences? We laugh !

on the same topic

La Rochelle: our two superstar brains

They are from La Rochelle, young and shine in their field. Mathematician Mickaël Launay and mentalist Fabien Olicard have become superstars posting videos on Youtube followed by thousands of subscribers. And his books are bestsellers in bookstores. We make the game.

living matter

If his video on the multiplication tables that, inscribed in a circle, form flowers, is by far the most viewed (5.2 million views), Mickaël Launay admits that the one on Conwell’s theory was “a twist”: classical themes, there I was deciphering a recent discovery, made the same year. Our role is to seek mathematics as it is done today. It is not an immutable block, it is a very living matter. »

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