Gerolamo Cardano

Early life, education, and career
– Cardano was born on September 24, 1501, in Pavia, Lombardy.
– His father, Fazio Cardano, was a mathematically gifted jurist and close friend of Leonardo da Vinci.
– Cardano’s mother, Chiara Micheri, took abortive medicines to terminate the pregnancy.
– Cardano’s three other siblings died from the Plague before his birth.
– He entered the University of Pavia against his father’s wishes and later graduated with a doctorate in medicine from the University of Padua.
– Cardano settled in Piove di Sacco and practiced medicine without a license.
– He married Lucia Banderini in 1531 and had three children.
– With the help of noblemen, Cardano obtained a teaching position in mathematics in Milan.
– He became one of the most sought-after doctors in Milan, treating influential patients.
– Cardano turned down offers from the kings of Denmark and France, and the Queen of Scotland.

Contributions to mathematics
– Cardano was the first European mathematician to make systematic use of negative numbers.
– He published solutions to the cubic and quartic equations in his book ‘Ars Magna.’
– Cardano acknowledged the existence of imaginary numbers.
– He introduced the binomial coefficients and the binomial theorem.
– Cardano’s book on games of chance contains the first systematic treatment of probability.

Other contributions
– Cardano invented the Cardan Gear mechanism, which converts rotational motion to linear motion.
– He is credited with the invention of the Cardan suspension or gimbal.
– Cardano made contributions to hydrodynamics and believed perpetual motion is impossible.
– He introduced the Cardan grille, a cryptographic writing tool.
– Cardano advocated for the education of deaf people and their ability to learn to read and write.

– Cardano’s achievements in algebra and probability made him one of the most influential mathematicians of the Renaissance.
– His work on mechanical devices, such as the combination lock and Cardan shaft, had a lasting impact.
– Cardano’s writings on various subjects, including medicine and natural science, contributed to the knowledge of his time.
– He paved the way for the study of complex numbers and their applications.
– Cardano’s ideas and inventions continue to be studied and appreciated in the fields of mathematics, physics, and engineering.

Works and publications
– Cardano’s works spanned various fields including mathematics, medicine, astrology, and philosophy.
– Liber de Ludo Aleae: In this book, Cardano discussed the concept of probability, making him one of the pioneers in the field.
– Ars Magna: Cardano’s most famous work, it introduced the general solution to cubic equations and laid the foundation for algebra.
– De Subtilitate: This work explored natural philosophy and covered a wide range of topics such as physics, chemistry, and metaphysics.
– The Book of My Life: Cardano’s autobiography, which provided insights into his personal and professional experiences.Sources: