The Costa surface is a complete minimal embedded surface of finite topology (i.e., it has no boundary and does not intersect itself). It has genus 1 with three punctures (Schwalbe and Wagon 1999). Until this surface was discovered by Costa (1984), the only other known complete minimal embeddable surfaces in with no self-intersections were the plane (genus 0), catenoid (genus 0 with two punctures), and helicoid (genus 0 with two punctures), and it was conjectured that these were the only such surfaces.Rather amazingly, the Costa surface belongs to the dihedral group of symmetries.The Costa minimal surface appears on the cover of Osserman (1986; left figure) as well as on the cover of volume 2, number 2 of La Gaceta de la Real Sociedad Matemática Española (1999; right figure).It has also been constructed as a snow sculpture (Ferguson et al. 1999, Wagon1999).On Feb. 20, 2008, a large stone sculpture by Helaman Ferguson was..
Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of 13, a number commonly associated with bad luck in Western culture. While fear of the number 13 can be traced back to medieval times, the word triskaidekaphobia itself is of recent vintage, having been first coined by Coriat (1911; Simpson and Weiner 1992). It seems to have first appeared in the general media in a Nov. 8, 1953 New York Times article covering discussions of a United Nations committee.This superstition leads some people to fear or avoid anything involving the number 13. In particular, this leads to interesting practices such as the numbering of floors as 1, 2, ..., 11, 12, 14, 15, ... (OEIS A011760; the "elevator sequence"), omitting the number 13, in many high-rise American hotels, the numbering of streets avoiding 13th Avenue, and so on.Apparently, 13 hasn't always been considered unlucky. In fact, it appears that in ancient times, 13 was either considered in a positive light or..
A definite integral is an integral(1)with upper and lower limits. If is restricted to lie on the real line, the definite integral is known as a Riemann integral (which is the usual definition encountered in elementary textbooks). However, a general definite integral is taken in the complex plane, resulting in the contour integral(2)with , , and in general being complex numbers and the path of integration from to known as a contour.The first fundamental theorem of calculus allows definite integrals to be computed in terms of indefinite integrals, since if is the indefinite integral for a continuous function , then(3)This result, while taught early in elementary calculus courses, is actually a very deep result connecting the purely algebraic indefinite integral and the purely analytic (or geometric) definite integral. Definite integrals may be evaluated in the Wolfram Language using Integrate[f, x, a, b].The question of which definite..