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I Learned More Maths Watching This 30 Minute Disney Cartoon Than I Did in School

Updated on May 11, 2018

Donal Duck in Math-Magic land (1959)

Whilst exploring the depths of YouTube I stumbled upon this childrens cartoon which is over 50 years old.

27 minutes later I knew more about Maths than I had ever learned in school. Perhaps it's an exaggeration, but the cartoon definitely shows the beauty of mathematics.

The cartoon became popular in american schools in the 1960s and was even nominated for an academy award!

However I doubt it is still shown today, but despite its age it is as relevant as ever since the laws of mathematics never change.


The cartoon covers some fascinating applications of Maths in the real world.

I originally read about 'Phi' or 'the golden ratio' in the popular Dan Brown novel 'The Da Vinci Code'. I am not sure about you, but I for one was never taught about this amazing formula in my 15 years of formal schooling.

'Phi' the golden ratio
'Phi' the golden ratio

The Billards scene was simply mind blowing. Although I am not a huge billards or snooker player, I have played my fair share of games, and never once had anyone ever mentioned the methods shown in the video.

Again it made Maths interesting by demonstrating how Maths and Physics can be applied to real life (especially if you enjoy hustling in pool halls).

By learning some simple equations you can drastically increase your chances of winning.
By learning some simple equations you can drastically increase your chances of winning.

The more you consider the real world applications of mathematics the more apparent they become, from the engineering principles and physics equations necessary to create the building you are sitting in, to the computer coding that allows you to read this article on your device, or even the variety of radio waves and WiFi signals passing through your body at this very moment.

Mathematics has been said to be the “fingerprint of God”, that it is proof for there being a God in the universe. Others have even gone so far to claim the Maths is God.

Another increasingly popular theory is “simulation theory”, that as the name suggests; we are living in a computer simulation, a virtual reality similar to that in the Keanu Reeves blockbuster ‘The Matrix’. That Maths and the laws of Physics are rules in coding.

The idea may seem far fetched at first but as we see technology rapidly advance, what is not to say that in ten, fifty, even a hundred years we haven’t invented a VR headset that makes it impossible to distinguish reality?... if you can believe that then what is not to say that has not already happened?

Are we living in a simulation?
Are we living in a simulation?

Whatever your beliefs on the nature of reality, Maths is here and it’s here to stay!

As we have seen throughout history, if we can harness mathematics we can achieve amazing feats from building the pyramids, sending man to the moon, to being able to watch a Donald Duck cartoon in the palm of your hand!


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