What’s common between Pacman, Apple pie and your camera?
"In what shape should the vessel base be moulded to hold the maximum amount of water for a given quantity of material?"
Confused between the options, Ryan stared at the wall clock as it ticked away. He noticed its round shape, and suddenly he remembered what his teacher had taught him. He calmly checked Option B - Circular base and finished his test.
Ecstatic about doing well in his test and kicked at remembering what his tutor had said in class, Ryan began reading more about geometrical shapes. He was particularly fascinated by the uniqueness of the circle.
Mr. Wayne had said in class - "A circle has the largest area for a given length of perimeter. It is also the shape with the minimum possible perimeter for a given area."
The more he read about it, the more it intrigued him. With no edges and vertices, he noticed how circles are extensively used in Art and Design.
To remember the formula for a circle's area, Ryan related it to his favourite go-to dish and came up with the phrase - "Pie Are Squared" (even though pies are mostly round)!!
His teacher, Mr Wayne, was impressed by Ryan's newfound interest in geometry and often gave him interesting trivia and facts to amuse him.
"Video games graphics are all about geometrical figures."
He would say something like this and leave, allowing Ryan to ponder over it. The next time Ryan played Pacman, he realised what Mr. Wayne meant.
Everything around us is a combination of geometrical figures, circles being the most prominent. From the Sun and the moon to doorknobs, wheels, pizzas and camera lenses, circles are an intrinsic part of our everyday lives.
Fun fact: When a group of army ants gets separated from the main foraging party, they lose the pheromone track and follow one another in continuously rotating circles. They keep going until they die of exhaustion! It is rightly called The Death Spiral!
Giggling, Ryan couldn't help but remember what the famous William Shakespeare had said - "The wheel comes full circle."
In Ancient Greek culture, the circle was thought of as the perfect shape. Can you think why? How many lines of symmetry does a circle have, for instance?
A highly symmetric shape, every line through the centre of the circle forms a line of reflection symmetry. It also has rotational symmetry around the centre for every angle. This property makes the circle pleasing to the eye.
Wherever you are, stop for a moment and look around. See how many geometrical figures you can identify. Can you see circles are the ones that look the most complete and attractive?