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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index O > William Osgood Quotes

William Osgood
(10 Mar 1864 - 22 Jul 1943)

American mathematician who spent much of his career on the theory of functions.

Science Quotes by William Osgood (3 quotes)

If we turn to the problems to which the calculus owes its origin, we find that not merely, not even primarily, geometry, but every other branch of mathematical physics—astronomy, mechanics, hydrodynamics, elasticity, gravitation, and later electricity and magnetism—in its fundamental concepts and basal laws contributed to its development and that the new science became the direct product of these influences.
— William Osgood
Opening of Presidential Address (27 Apr 1907) to the American Mathematical Society, 'The Calculus in Colleges and Technical Schools', published in Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society (Jun 1907), 13, 449.
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It is customary in physics to take geometry for granted, as if it were a branch of mathematics. But in substance geometry is the noblest branch of physics.
— William Osgood
In Introduction to the Calculus (1922), 348, footnote.
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The calculus is the greatest aid we have to the appreciation of physical truth in the broadest sense of the word.
— William Osgood
Conclusion of Presidential Address (27 Apr 1907) to the American Mathematical Society, 'The Calculus in Colleges and Technical Schools', published in Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society (Jun 1907), 13, 467.
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Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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