# Tamilnadu Board Class 9 English Solutions Prose Chapter 6 From Zero to Infinity

## Tamilnadu State Board Class 9 English Solutions Prose Chapter 6 From Zero to Infinity

### From Zero to Infinity In-Text Questions

From Zero to Infinity Summary Question. What was the reaction of the classmates to Ramanujan’s question?
The classmates laughed at Ramanujan’s question.

From Zero to Infinity Mind Map Question. What did the Indian mathematician Bhaskara prove?
The Indian mathematician Bhaskara proved that zero divided by zero is infinity.

Question.
Where did Ramanujan get S.L. Loney’s book on Trigonometry?
Ramanujan got Loney’s “Trigonometry” book from a college library.

From Zero to Infinity 9th Standard English Question. Where did Ramanujan do his mathematical problems?
Ramanujan did his mathematical problems on loose sheets of paper or on a slate.

Question.
What were the subjects neglected by Ramanujan in college?
History, English, Physiology were the subjects neglected by Ramanujan in college.

From Zero to Infinity Biography of Srinivasa Ramanujan Question. Which University granted him a fellowship of H75 a month?
University of Madras granted him a fellowship of? 75 a month.

From Zero to Infinity Lesson Plan Question. What did Ramanujan send to G.H. Hardy?
Ramanujan sent a letter in which he set out 120 theorems and formulae to G.H Hardy.

Question.
Who discovered a rare mathematical genius in Ramanujan?
G.H Hardy and his colleague J.E. Littlewood discovered a rare mathematical genius in Ramanujan.

A. Answer the following questions in a sentence or two.

From Zero to Infinity Lesson Summary Question 1.
Why did the students laugh at Ramanujan?
The students laughed at Ramanujan because he asked if no banana was distributed among no one, would every one get one banana.

Question 2.
Why did the teacher compliment Ramanujan?
The teacher complimented Ramanuj for asking a question that took centuries for mathematicians to answer.

Question 3.
Question What did Ramanujan do after reading the book on Trigonometry?
After reading the book on Trigonometry, Ramanujan began his own research. He came forth with many mathematical theorems and formulae not given in the book

Question 4.
What disappointed Ramanujan’s father?
Ramanujan failed twice in his first year arts examination in college as he neglected other subjects such as History, English and Physiology. This disappointed his father.

Question 5.
How did Ramanujan manage his paper crisis?
Ramanujan needed about 2,000 sheets of paper every month. He started using even scraps of paper he found lying on the streets. Sometimes he used a red pen to write over what was written in blue ink.

Question 6.
Why were Ramanujan’s application for jobs rejected?
Ramanujan would show his frayed notebooks to every officers. But no one could understand what was written in the notebooks. So, his applications for jobs were rejected.

Question 7.
Why was Ramanujan sent back to India?
While Ramanujan continued his research work, Tuberculosis, then an incurable disease, was devouring him. So, he was sent back to India.

Question 1.
What was the teacher doing?
The teacher was solving questions on division. He drew three bananas on the blackboard and started to solve the problems.

Question 2.
What was the most significant turn In Ramanujam’s life?
The most significant turn came two years later, when one of his senior friends showed him Synopsis of Elementary Results in Pure Applied Mathematics by George Shoo bridge Carr. This book triggered the mathematical genius in him.

Question 3.
What did Ramanujam do, before he went abroad? .
Before Ramanujan went abroad, he had filled three notebooks, which later became famous as ‘Ramanujan’s Frayed Notebooks’.

Question 4.
Why did Ramanujan’s father think that his son was mad?
Ans :
When Ramanujan’s father found his son always scribbling numbers and not doing much else, he thought Ramanujan had gone mad.

Question 5.
Who was impressed by his notebooks?
The Director of Madras Port Trust, Francis Spring was impressed by his
notebooks and gave him a clerical job on a monthly salary of? 25.

Question 6.
How did Ramanujan find himself at Cambridge?
Ramanujan found himself a stranger at Cambridge. The cold was hard to bear and being a vegetarian, he had to cook his own food. However, he continued his research in Mathematics with determination.

Question 7.
What did Ramanujan do to forget his agonising pain?
Ramanujan continued to play with numbers even on his death-bed to forget his agonising pain.

Question 8.
What was Ramanujan, beside being a mathematician?
Beside being a mathematician, Ramanujan was an astrologer of repute and a good speaker.

Question 9.
While at research work, what disease was devouring him?
While Ramanujan continued his research work, Tuberculosis, then an incurable disease was devouring him.

Question 10.
On what subjects did Ramanujan used to give lectures?
Ramanujan used to give lectures on subjects like ‘God, Zero and Infinity’.

Question 1.
Describe the life of Srinivasa Ramanujan in India.
Ramanujan was born in Erode in Tamilnadu on December 22,1887. From early childhood, it was evident that he was a prodigy. Senior students used to get his assistance in solving math problems. At the age of 13, he began his own research on Trigonometry. The book “Elementary Results in Pure Applied Mathematics” by George Shoobridge Carr triggered the genius in Ramanujan. He used to do problems on loose sheets and enter the results in notebooks which are now famous as “Ramanujan’s Frayed Notebooks”.

Although Ramanujan secured a first class in Mathematics in the matriculation examination and was awarded the Subramanyan Scholarship, he failed twice in his first year arts examination in college as he neglected other subjects such as History, English and Physiology. He searched for job for food and papers to do calculations. The Director of Madras Port Trust gave a clerical job to Ramanujan on a monthly salary of Rupees 25.

Question 2.
Narrate the association of Ramanujan with G.H. Hardy.
Ramanujan sent a letter to the great Mathematician G.H. Hardy of Cambridge University, in which he set out 120 theorems and formulae which included the Reimann Series. Hardy and his colleague Littlewood realized that they had discovered a rare mathematical genius. They invited him to Britain.Despite the cold weather and food, Ramanujan continued his research with determination in the company of Hardy and Littlewood. Hardy found an unsystematic mathematician in Ramanujan due to his lack of formal education. Ramanujan’s achievements include the Hardy-Ramanujan-Littlewood circle method in number theory.

Question 1.
Narrate the incident, which took place in the class of Ramanujan.
The arithmetic class was in progress. The teacher was solving questions on division. He drew three bananas on the black board and asked the students if they have three bananas and three boys, how many each will get. A smart boy in the front row replied that each one would get one. He then proceeded to ask if 1000 bananas are distributed among 1000 boys would each one get one banana. A boy sitting in one comer raised his hand and stood up. The teacher stopped his explanation and waited for the boy to speak. He asked the teacher if no banana is distributed among no one, will everyone still get one banana.

There was a roar of laughter in the class. The teacher asked the ‘ students to stop laughing and explained to the boys, what he was asking. It was if zero banana is divided among zero, would each one get one? The answer would be ‘no’. Mathematically, each would get an infinite number of bananas. The boy had asked a question that had taken mathematicians several centuries to answer.

Question 2.
Why were Ramanujan’s applications for Jobs turned down?
Ramanujan began to look for a job, as he had to find money not only for food, but for papers as well to do his calculations. He needed about 2000 sheets of paper every month. He visited offices and showed everyone his frayed notebooks and told them that he knew mathematics and he could do a clerical job. He behaved in an unpleasant way and was not neatly dressed. No one could understand what was written in the notebooks and so his applications for jobs were turned down.

C. Match the words with correct Synonym and Antonym from the table.

Listening

D. Listen to the anecdote “Two Geniuses” and narrate it in your own words.

Narration of “Two Geniuses”

There’s a story about how Dr. Albert Einstein was travelling to Universities in his car, delivering lectures on his theory of relativity. During one tired journey, his driver Hans remarked “Dr. Einstein, I have heard you deliver that lecture about 30 times. ,t I know it by heart and bet I could give it myself.”

“Well, I’ll give you the chance”, said the Dr. “They don’t know me at the next University, so when we get there, I’ll put on your cap, and you introduce yourself as Dr. Einstein and give the lecture.”

The driver delivered Einstein’s lecture without any mistakes. When he finished, he started to leave, but one of the professor stopped him and asked a complex question filled with mathematical equations and formulae. The driver thought fast. “The answer to that problem is so simple,” he said,” I’m surprised you have to ask me. In fact, to show you just how simple it is, I’m going to ask my driver Hans to come up here and answer your question”.

Speaking

E. Divide the students into groups of five and conduct a group discussion on the topic “Importance of Mathematics in Our Everyday Life” The teacher will act as a moderator.

Group Discussion on Importance of Mathematics

Teacher : Good morning students! We have just learnt the life of the great mathematician Ramanujan. Now let’s have a group discussion on “Importance of Mathematics in Our Everyday Life”. Divide yourselves into groups of five.

Harsha (Group A) : The importance of maths in everyday life. Mathematics is a methodical application of matter. It is so said because the subject makes a man methodical or systematic. Mathematics makes our life orderly and prevents chaos.

Varsha (Group B) : In Hebrew, it’s root is “thinking.” They tell us that mathematics gives us the critical ability to learn and think logically in any field of endeavor. The skills of learning today are more important than knowledge, which is so readily available on the Internet.

Yusuf (Group C) : Math is an important part of our lives, because in the future you will get a job that deals with math. Math is pretty much in everything you do, really. Math is important because it is the most widely used subject in the world. Every career uses some sort of math.

Adhira (Group D) : Maths improves problem-solving abilities. Teaches clearer logical reasoning. Sharpens concentration and observance. Develops confidence and self-esteem.

Danny (Group E) : Knowing basic math principles keeps you from having to carry around a calculator because good use of math allows you to do many calculations in your head.

F. Answer the following questions based on the given passage.

From Zero to Infinity Question 1. What made John Shepherd-Barron to come up with the idea of ATM?
It was then John’s habit to withdraw money on a Saturday, but on this particular weekend he had arrived one minute late and found the bank doors locked against him. This made him to come up with idea of ATM.

Question 2.
When and where was the first ATM installed?
The first ATM was installed at a branch in the North London suburb of Enfield on June 27, 1967.

Question 3.
Who was the first person to withdraw cash from the ATM?
The first person to withdraw cash from the ATM was Reg Varney, a celebrity resident of Enfield known for his part in the number of popular television series.

Question 4.
Why did Shepherd-Barron reduce the PIN number from six digits to four?
Shepherd-Barron’s wife said that she could only remember four figures, because of her, four figures became the world standard.

Question 5.
Which theory of Ramanujan helps the ATMs to dispense cash?
Ramanujan’s Partition theory helps the ATMs to dispense cash.

Writing

G. Paragraph Writing

Question 1.
Write a paragraph of 100-120 words about a memorable anecdote / incident of your life.

A memorable anecdote/incident in my life

I was then a student of class four. One day, I was left at home with my grandmother. It was in the afternoon, my grandmother was taking a nap. I was a very restless one. The toys soon bored me and I looked around for something new. The unique thing which caught my attention was my Grandma’s spectacles.

I put it on my nose just in the style of my Grandma and looked around. Soon my eyes got tired. As I felt pain in my eyes, I removed the specs and threw them away. They struck the wall and landed on the ground broken. Now I got worried and afraid. I started trying to repair it. As I was holding these glass pieces I felt a severe pain in the middle finger of my right hand, I looked at it .

Blood was trickling down from a deep cut in my finger. I started crying loudly. On hearing my loud wailing my Grandma woke up. She hurriedly came out of her room, took a quick glance at my adventure and detecting the source of my trouble, she pressed her hand on my cut finger for sometime and then she took me to the doctor for bandaging. I was very much afraid of punishment but my Grandma forgave me although she had to suffer difficulty in seeing until the glasses were repaired. However I was naturally punished as I could neither eat my meals nor do my home work for three days.

Question 2.

My favourite personality

There are many people all around the world who are very famous and celebrities. But my favourite personality is my father. My father is my hero. He is kind, polite and really friendly to everyone. He is a teacher by profession and is very good in teaching. He is always ready to help and support the needy and helpless. He is a God fearing person and always teaches us to remember the God’s gifts and God’s love for the world.

I am so proud to have a father like him. He is a simple man with kind rules. He is handsome, my favourite and my ideal man. He is my friend and always ready to encourage, appreciate me for success and always ready to help me wherever I need a friend or a support of my father. I am proud of my father and wish him good health forever.

Grammar

Connectors

A. Complete the following sentences using appropriate Connectors from the box.

moreover
although
meanwhile
therefore
because
as long as
thus
above all
for instance
except

1. She felt cold _________ she was wearing a winter coat.
although
2. This restaurant has some of the best chefs in the town.__________ their service is excellent.
Moreover

3. I’m not going to the party tonight __________ I didn’t get an invitation.
because

4. You can set the table. __________, I’ll start making dinner.
Meanwhile

5. I can play quite a few instruments __________ , the flute, the guitar and the piano.
For instance

6. The store was out of chocolate chips; __________ they would need to make a different type of cookies.
therefore

7. The stores are open daily __________ Sundays.
except

8. I’ll stay __________ you need me.
as long as

9. This detergent is highly concentrated and __________ you will need to dilute it.
thus

10. It was the thing he prized __________ .
above all

Active Voice and Passive Voice

B. Convert the following active sentences into passive sentences by supplying an appropriate passive verb form.

Question 1.
She will not recognize us. / We__________ by her.
(a) will not recognize
(b) will not being recognized
(c) will not be recognized
(c) will not be recognized

Question 2.
They didn’t invite me, but I went anyway. /I __________ but I went anyway.
(a) wasn’t invited
(b) wasn’t being invited
(c) wasn’t inviting
(a) wasn’t invited

Question 3.
They broke up the table for firewood. / The table __________ up for firewood.
(a) broke
(c) was broken
(c) was broken

Question 4.
She has won the first prize. / The first prize __________ by her.
(a) has won
(b) has been won
(b) has been won

Question 5.
A friend of mine is repairing the car. / The car __________ by a friend of mine.
(a) is repairing
(b) is repaired
(c) is being repaired
(c) is being repaired

Question 6.
Begin the work tomorrow. / Let the work __________ tomorrow.
(a) be begun
(b) begin
(c) is beginning
(a) be begun

Question 7.
They speak English in New Zealand. / English __________ in New Zealand.
(a) is speaking
(b) is spoken
(c) is being spoken
(b) is spoken

Question 8.
His attitude shocked me. /I __________ by his attitude.
(c) was shocked
(c) was shocked

Question 9.
She had already sent the parcel. / The parcel __________ by her.

Question 10.
Her silence worries me. /I __________ her silence.
(a) am worrying by
(b) am worried by
(c) have worried by
(b) am worried by

C. Match the following Active voice sentences with Passive voice.

1. (e)
2. (c)
3. (d)
4. (b)
5. (a)

D. Change the following into passive voice.

Zero to Infinity Solutions Question 1. Stanley will inform you later.
You will be informed by Stanley later.

Question 2.
People speak Portuguese in Brazil.
Portuguese is spoken by people in Brazil.

Question 3.
My grandfather built this house in 1943.
This house was built by my grandfather in 1943.

Question 4.
Do not hurt the animals.
You are warned not to hurt the animals.

Question 5.
You must not drop litter in the streets.
You are warned not to drop litter in the streets.

Question 6.
Carry it home.
Let it be carried to home.

Question 7.
They are decorating the wall.
The wall is being decorated by them.

Question 8.
He has already mended the TV set.
The TV set has already been mended by him.

Project

E. Make a scrapbook of ‘famous Biographies’ by collecting at least five biographies of famous scientists, mathematicians, inventors, artists etc., of your choice. You may also collect the pictures related to their achievements, inventions etc.

(To be done by the student)

### From Zero to Infinity Textual Activities

Warm Up

Question.
Solve this

Question.
Did you enjoy solving this?
Yes. I enjoyed solving this puzzle

Question.
Was it easy or hard to solve?
Yes. It was easy.

Question.
Do you like Mathematics? Give reasons.
Yes. I like Mathematics as it is exciting.

Synonyms & Antonyms : Additional Questions

I. Choose the correct Synonym for the underlined words.

Question 1.
(a) clever
(b) silly
(c) wise
(b) silly

Question 2.
Senior students used to go to his dingy house.
(a) dark and dirty place
(b) bright place
(c) attractive place
(a) dark and dirty place

Question 3.
But Ramanujan was ignorant of the work of the German mathematician George. F. Riemann.
(a) conscious
(b) educated
(c) unaware
(c) unaware

Question 4.
His father was a petty clerk in a cloth shop.
(a) significant
(b) insignificant
(c) important
(b) insignificant

Question 5.
Unkempt and uncouth, he would visit offices.
(a) neat
(b) clean
(c) not neat
(c) not neat

Another Type of Exercise

Choose the appropriate Synonym of the underlined words.

1. Ramanujan’s father was a petty (i) clerk in a cloth shop. From early childhood it was evident that he was a prodigy (ii). Senior students used to go to his dingy (iii) house to get their difficulties in mathematics solved. At the age of 13, Ramanujan was lent a book on advanced (iv) trigonometry written by S.L. Loney. Not only did he master this rather (v) difficult book but also began his own research.

i) (a) insignificant
(b) significant
(c) royal
(d) major
(a) insignificant

ii) (a) imbecile
(b) genius
(c) normality
(d) regularity
(b) genius

iii) (a) dark
(b) gloomy
(c) bright and clean
(d) dull
(c) bright and clean

iv) (a) basic
(b) middle
(c) primitive
(d) progressive
(d) progressive

v) (a) quite
(b) extremely
(c) insignificantly
(d) violently
(a) quite

2. Although Ramanujan secured (i) a first class in mathematics in the matriculation examination and was awarded (ii) the Subramanyan Scholarship, he failed twice in his first-year arts examination in college, as he neglected (iii) other subjects such as History, English and Physiology. This disappointed (iv) his father. When he found the boy always scribbling numbers and not doing much else, he thought Ramanujan had gone mad (v)

i) (a) missed
(b) gave up
(c) obtained
(d) lost
(d) lost

ii) (a) granted
(b) denied
(c) refused
(d) disallowed
(a) granted

iii) (a) included
(b) abandoned
(c) cherished
(d) completed
(b) abandoned

iv) (a) distressed
(b) charmed
(c) contented
(d) comforted
(a) distressed

v) (a) wise
(b) rational
(c) sane
(d) insane
(d) insane

3. Unkempt (i) and uncouth (ii), he would visit offices, showing everyone his frayed (iii) notebooks and telling them that he knew mathematics and could do a clerical job. But no one could understand what was written in the notebooks and his applications for jobs were turned down (iv). Luckily for him, he at last found someone who was impressed (v) by his notebooks.

i) (a) neat
(b) messy
(c) tidy
(d) trim
(b) messy

ii) (a) rude
(b) decent
(c) civilized
(d) polite
(a) rude

iii) (a) neat
(b) perfect
(c) worn out
(d) smart
(c) worn out

iv) (a) processed
(b) accepted
(c) considered
(d) rejected
(d) rejected

v) (a) apathetic
(b) amazed
(c) callous
(d) heedless
(b) amazed

II. Choose the correct Antonym for the underlined words.

Question 1.
The arithmetic class was in progress.
(b) decline
(c) movement
(b) decline

Question 2.
He could forget much of the hardship, he had to endure.
(a) suffer
(b) combat
(c) agree
(b) combat

Question 3.
He came forth with many mathematical theorems.
(a) backward
(b) forward
(c) onward
(a) backward

Question 4.
The teacher was solving questions on division.
(b) subtraction
(c) multiplication
(c) multiplication

Question 5.
There was a roar of laughter in the class.
(a) cry
(c) giggle
(c) smile
(a) cry

Another Type of Exercise

Choose the appropriate Antonyms of the underlined words.

1. Everyone laughed again. The boys understood the trick (i), arithmetic had played upon them. What they could not understand was why the teacher later complimented (ii) the boy who had asked that absurd (iii) question. The boy who asked the intriguing (iv) question was Srinivasa Ramanujan. Throughout his life, he was always ahead (v) of his mathematics teachers.

i) (a) deceive
(b) cheat
(c) honesty
(d) fool
(c) honesty

ii) (a) commended
(b) abused
(c) praised
(d) congratulated
(b) abused

iii) (a) logical
(b) ridiculous
(c) senseless
(d) foolish
(a) logical

iv) (a) interesting
(b) alluring
(c) boring
(d) appealing
(c) boring

(b) backward
(c) forward
(d) onward
(b) backward

2. In Ramanujan, Hardy found an unsystematic mathematician, similar to one who knows the Pythagoras theorem but does not know what a congruent (i) triangle means. Several discrepancies in his research could be attributed (ii) to his lack of formal education. Ramanujan played with numbers, as a child would with a toy. It was sheer genius (iii) that led him to mathematical “truths”. The task of proving them, so important (iv) in Science, he left to lesser mortals (v).

i) (a) concurring
(b) harmonious
(c) agreeable
(d) disagreeable
(d) disagreeable

ii) (a) connected
(b) unrelated
(c) credited
(d) associated
(b) unrelated

iii) (a) ignorance
(b) ability
(c) flair
(d) aptitude
(a) ignorance

iv)(a) critical
(b) unimportant
(c) crucial
(d) imperative
(b) unimportant

v) (a) humans
(b) characters
(c) individuals
(d) immortals
(d) immortals

3. While Ramanujan continued his research work, Tuberculosis, then an incurable disease, was devouring (i) him. Ramanujan was sent back to India and when he disembarked (ii), his friends found him pale, exhausted (iii) and emaciated (iv). To forget the agonizing (v) pain, he continued to play with numbers even on his death bed.

i) (a) consuming
(b) eating
(c) absorbing
(d) avoiding
(c) hated

ii) (a) alighted
(b) landed
(c) embarked
(d) decended
(b) boredom

iii) (a) tired
(b) energetic
(c) worn out
(d) fatigued
(d) inconveniently

iv) (a) lean
(b)chubby
(c) thin
(d) skinny
(a) unlikely

v) (a) painful
(b) severe
(c) pleasant
(d) distressing
(c) go

Complete the following by choosing the correct answer from the options given.

Question 1.
The teacher was solving questions on _______________.
(a) division
(b) Mathematics
(c) multiplication
(a) division

Question 2.
There was a roar of laughter in the _______________.
(a) room
(b) corridor
(c) class
(d) hall
(c) class

Question 3.
“Mathematically, each will get an _______________ number of bananas!”
(a) equal
(b) unlimited
(c) infinite
(d) extra
(c) infinite

Question 4.
The boys understood the trick, _______________ had played upon them.
(a) mathematics
(b) the teacher
(c) the student
(d) arithmetic
(d) arithmetic

Question 5.
The boy who _______________the intriguing question was Srinivasa Ramanujan.
(c) put forward
(d) enquired

Question 6.
His father was a petty clerk in a _______________ shop.
(a) grocery
(b) toy
(c) cloth
(d) jewellery
(c) cloth

Question 7.
He needed about _______________ sheets of paper every month,
(a) 1000
(b) 2000
(c) 1500
(d)3000
(b) 2000

Question 8.
On March 17,1914, he sailed for _______________.
(a) Britain
(b) London
(c) Germany
(d) France
(a) Britain

Question 9.
Ramanujan found himself a stranger at _______________.
(a) Cambridge
(c) Yale
(b) Oxford
(d) London
(a) Cambridge

Question 10.
He was _______________ the Indian to receive distinguished fellowship,
(a) oldest
(b) first
(c) second
(d) youngest
(d) youngest

Question 11.
A smart boy in the front row replied _______________.
(a) all will get two
(b) each will get one
(c) no one will get anything
(b) each will get one

Question 12.
_______________ the teacher said loudlv.
(a) Quiet
(b) Be silent
(c) sit down
(a) Quiet

Question 13.
‘Uncouth’ is behaving in a _______________.
(a) pleasant way
(b) unpleasant way
(c) careless way
(b) unpleasant way

Question 14.
The teacher stopped and _______________.
(b) waited for the boy to speak
(c) enquired the boy
(b) waited for the boy to speak

Question 15.
He used to lecture on subjects like _______________.
(a) astrologies and mathematics
(b) health and diseases
(c) ‘God, Zero and infinity’
(c) ‘God, Zero and infinity’

From Zero to Infinity About the Author

Srinivasa Ramanujan (22 December 1887 – 26 April 1920) was an Indian mathematician who lived during the British rule in India. Though he had almost no formal training in pure Mathematics, he made substantial contributions to mathematical analysis, number theory, infinite series, and continued fractions, including solutions to mathematical problems considered to be unsolvable. He was born on 22 December 1887 into a Tamil Brahmin Iyengar family in Erode, Madras Presidency (now Tamil Nadu). The Man Who Knew Infinity: A Life of the Genius Ramanujan is a biography of Ramanujan, written in 1991 by Robert Kanigel and published by Washington Square Press.

From Zero to Infinity Summary

This lesson ‘From Zero to Infinity’ is a biography of Srinivasa Ramanujan. He was an Indian h Mathematician, who lived during the British rule in India. His knowledge of Mathematics was extraordinary.

One day, when the arithmetic class was in progress, his teacher was solving questions on , division. When the teacher asked the students if there were three students and three bananas, how many each students would get, a smart boy replied that each one would get one banana. Then he proceeded to ask if 1000 bananas are distributed among 1000 boys, would each one get one banana? f Ramanujan stood up and asked his teacher, if no banana is distributed among no one, would everyone still get one banana? All the other students laughed at this silly question.

But the teacher understood his question and explained to the students what he had asked. It was if zero banana is divided among zero, would each one get one? The answer would be ‘no’. Mathematically, each would get an infinite number of bananas. The boy had asked a question that had taken mathematicians several centuries to answer.

Ramanujan was bom in Erode in Tamilnadu on December 22,1%87. From early childhood, it was evident that he was a prodigy. Senior students used to get his assistance in solving math problems. At the age of 13, he began his own research on Trigonometry. The book “Synopsis of Elementary Results in Pure Applied Mathematics” by George Shoobridge Carr triggered the genius in Ramanuj an.

He used to do problems on loose sheets and enter the results in notebooks which are now famous as “Ramanujan’s Frayed Notebooks”. Although Ramanujan secured a first class in Mathematics in the matriculation examination and was awarded the Subramanyan Scholarship, he failed twice in his first year arts examination in college as he neglected other subjects such as History, English and Physiology. He searched for job for food and papers to do calculations. The Director of Madras Port Tmst gave a clerical job to Ramanujan on a monthly salary of Rupees 25.

Ramanujan sent a letter to the great Mathematician G. H. Hardy of Cambridge University, in which he set out 120 theorems and formulae, which included the Reimann Series. Hardy and his colleague Littlewood realized that they had discovered a rare mathematical genius. They invited him to Britain.

Despite the cold weather and food, Ramanujan continued his research with determination ‘ in the company of Hardy and Littlewood. Hardy found an unsystematic mathematician in Ramanuj an due to his lack of formal education. Ramanujan’s achievements include the Hardy-Ramanujan- Littlewood circle method in number theory.

As Ramanujan was suffering from Tuberculosis, he was sent back to India. Even on his death bed, he continued to play with numbers, so that he could forget his agonising pain. Ramanujan was also an astrologer and a good speaker. He gave lectures on subjects like “God, Zero and Infinity”.

From Zero to Infinity Mind Map

From Zero to Infinity Glossary

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