The Father of Infinity and Modern Mathematics: Georg Cantor
“In mathematics, the art of proposing a question must be held of higher value than solving it.” This analysis belongs to the undervalued genius of his time, Georg Cantor.
One of the significant losses in this day and age is how unexcited we are about everything. Many people seem not to be affected by discoveries and information, which is one thing that Georg Cantor was very diligent in avoiding. He seldom lost his excitement for anything. Prime examples of this include how one day, when he was in deep thought, he realized that any line segment’s points match all points of three-dimensional space. Realizing this, he immediately sent a note to one of the only people that could correctly understand this, his friend Julies Dedekind, saying:
“Je le vois, mais je ne le crois pas!” Which, when translated, means “I see it, but I don’t believe it.”
When we put it like that, our minds go straight to him texting Dedekind. We have to realize that Steve Jobs was merely a vitamin in any given orange at the time.
We will have done an injustice if we talk so highly of Cantor without speaking of Dedekind. That is because the reason why Cantor was such an abstract thinker was because of Dedekind. Cantor and Dedekind spent many years passing letters to and from each other, speaking deeply of intense mathematical equations and problems.
While many people debate whether Cantor is or was one of the fathers of modern mathematics, I see it fit to name him the father of modern mathematics due to his founding of the fundamentals of math, Set Theory.
Cantor worked his entire life at Halle-Neustadt. Today, in front of that university stands a cube-shaped monument dedicated to him. On one of the sides of the monument, we see Cantor. We see written at the top right corner: “‘Georg Cantor mathematician, founder of set theory.” On the left side, we notice Cantor’s famous formula and…