The Joy of X
By jhuang28

570 BCE
Pythagoras
Pythagoras of Samos was an ancient Ionian Greek philosopher. His most notable contribution to mathematics is the Pythagorean theorem: a^2+b^2=c^2. This formula can be applied to a rightangled triangle to find any missing side length. He also discovered the five regular solids, the Theory of Proportions, the sphericity of the Earth, and the identity of the morning and evening stars as the planet, Venus. Photo 
495 BCE
Zeno of Elea
Zeno of Elea was a Greek philosopher best known for his paradoxes, some of them concerning the concept of infinity that puzzled his contemporaries and may have been partly to blame for infinity’s banishment from mathematics for centuries thereafter. Photo 
350 BCE
Euclid
Euclid of Alexandria was a Greek mathematician and one of the most influential mathematicians of all time. Often referred to as “the father of geometry”, his Elements is one of the most important and influential works in the history of mathematics and the most reprinted textbook of all time. He managed to deduce the theorems of what is now called Euclidean geometry from a small set of axioms. Photo 
780
Muhammad ibn Musa alKhwarizmi
AlKhwarizmi was a Persian polymath who greatly influenced mathematics, astronomy, and geography. He is best known for presenting the first systematic solution of linear and quadratic equations. The word algebra is derived from the title of his book, called Aljabr, which means restoring, referring to the method by which he solved these equations. Photo 
1512
Robert Recorde
Robert Recorde was a Welsh physician and mathematician best known for inventing the equals sign, as well as introduced the plus sign to English speakers. The equals sign is made up of two equalsized parallel lines as Recorde said: “No two things can be more equal”. Photo 
1564
Galileo Galilei
Galileo Galilei was an influential astronomer, physicist and engineer known for pioneering many different areas of knowledge, including observational astronomy, modern physics, the scientific method and modern science. His discoveries include laws about projectiles and planets, Jupiter’s moons, and the first pendulum clock, just to name a few. Photo 
1571
Johannes Kepler
Kepler was a German astronomer, mathematician, and astrologer who is best known for his laws of planetary motion. His work provided the foundations for Newton’s theory of universal gravitation. He was also mentioned in the telescopic discoveries of his contemporary Galileo Galilei. Photo 
Baruch Spinoza
Baruch Spinoza was an important philosopher of the early modern period. His book, entitled Ethics echoes Euclid’s deductive approach for logical reasoning. 
Isaac Newton
Isaac Newton was an English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, theologian, and author, and is one of the most important mathematicians and scientists of all time as a key figure in the scientific revolution. His notable contributions to mathematics include Newton’s method, a powerful algorithm for finding roots of equations in the complex plane, his work on the fundamental theorem of calculus and differential equations. Photo 
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz
Gottfried Leibniz was a German polymath and one of the most important logicians, mathematicians, and natural philosophers of the Enlightenment. He is best known for developing the presentday notation for differential and integral calculus, as well as his contributions in establishing the fundamental theorem of calculus. Photo 
Luigi Guido Grandi
Guido Grandi was an Italian monk, priest, philosopher, theologian, mathematician, and engineer. He is best known for having the infinite series 11+11… named after him. Grandi said the sum of the series could change depending on where you decide to add parentheses. However, Grandi believed that the true sum of this series is 1/2. Photo 
Carl Friedrich Gauss
Carl Friedrich Gauss was a German mathematician and physicist who is considered to be one of the greatest mathematicians since antiquity. He contributed and pioneered in many different areas of math, including differential geometry, algebra, and noneuclidean geometry. Photo 
Samuel Morse
Samuel Morse was an American inventor and painter known for his contributions to the invention of a singlewire telegraph system based on European telegraphs, as well as a codeveloper of Morse code. Photo 
Ezra Cornell
Ezra Cornell was an American businessman, politician, and philanthropist best town for being the founder of Western Union and a cofounder of Cornell University. Photo 
Hippolyte Fizeau
Hippolyte Fizeau was a French physicist who is best known for conducting the first terrestrial measurement of the speed of light when he projected a pulsed beam of light onto a distant mirror. Photo 
Bernhard Riemann
Bernhard Riemann was a German mathematician who made major contributions to analysis, number theory, and differential geometry. In the field of real analysis, he is known for the first rigorous formulation of the integral, the Riemann integral, and his work on the Fourier series. His work laid the mathematical foundation for Albert Einstein's theory of relativity. Photo 
James Clerk Maxwell
James Maxwell was a Scottish mathematical physicist best known for his unification of electricity, magnetism, and light by formulating a series of equations, creating a new field known as electromagnetic radiation, and paved the way for vector calculus. Photo 
Georg Cantor
Georg Cantor was a German mathematician who created set theory, which became a fundamental theory in math. During his research, he discovered that some infinities are bigger than others. Photo 
Henri Poincaré
Henri Poincaré was a French mathematician, theoretical physicist, engineer, and philosopher of science. He made many important contributions to pure and applied mathematics, mathematical physics, and celestial mechanics. He also laid the foundations of modern chaos theory with his discovery of a chaotic deterministic system and is considered one of the pioneers in topology. Photo 
David Hilbert
David Hilbert was a German mathematician and one of the most influential mathematicians of the 19th and 20th centuries. He contributed to many areas of math, including invariant theory, the calculus of variations, commutative algebra, algebraic number theory, the foundations of geometry, and much more. One of the problems he proposed is called the Hilbert Hotel Paradox, which explores the different infinities. Photo 
Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein was a German theoretical physicist and widely acknowledged to be one of the greatest physicists of all time. He is best known for developing the theory of relativity and his famous equation E=mc^2, but also contributed to the theory of quantum mechanics. Photo 
Werner Heisenberg
Werner Heisenberg was a German theoretical physicist and one of the key pioneers of quantum mechanics. Heisenberg was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics “for the creation of quantum mechanics”. Photo 
Paul Dirac
Paul Dirac was an English theoretical physicist who was one of the most significant physicists of the 20th century. He was a major contributor to the early development of both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics. Photo 
Murray GellMann
Murray GellMann was an American physicist who received the 1969 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on the theory of elementary particles. His life can be used as an allegory for the commutative law, as after not being able to get into the schools he wanted to, he wanted to commit suicide. However, he realized that he could first study at the university he did get into (MIT) and kill himself later. Photo