The previous year, his mother had met Janaki, a bright-eyed wisp of a girl, daughter of a distant relative. Horoscopes were matched and the nine-year-old was married off to the 22-year-old. Janaki would join him only after three years as she had to remain at her home till she attained puberty. By all accounts, their marriage you had its challenges — she was years younger and knew little mathematics while he was consumed by his equations and theorems. Janakai died in 1994 in a flat on Hanumantharayan street in Triplicane, chennai. Ramanujans house attracts very few visitors. It was in the Triplicane house that Ramanujan spent all his early years, furiously scribbling equations on scraps of paper. There are accounts of how a childhood friend visited Ramanujan at his house and, on seeing his room, a workshop of theorems and equations, the friend predicted that Ramanujan would one day be known as a genius. In reply, ramanujan is said to have raised his arm, pointed to his calloused and darkened elbow and said, my elbow is making a genius.
Kanigel writes: One day, the math teacher pointed out that any number divided by itself was one: divide three fruits among three people, he was saying, each would get one so ramanujan piped up: But is zero divided by zero also one? If no fruits are divided among no one, will each still get one? In 1906, after his matriculation, a young Ramanujan left Kumbakonam for Madras for his intermediate (higher secondary). In 1906, at 19, he arrived at Egmore Station in Madras, three years before his marriage to janaki ammal. An anecdote in Kanigels book says that when Ramanujan first arrived at the madras railway station, he was so tired and disoriented that he fell asleep in the waiting room. A man woke him up, took him back to his house, fed him, gave him directions, and sent him on his way to the college (Pachaiyappas College where he would fail his intermediary exams before taking up the job in Madras Port Trust, writes Kanigel. In 1909, he married Janaki ammal.
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Ramanujans house in Kumbakonam. Now maintained by a private deemed university, its called the essay Srinivasa ramanujan International Monument. A signboard in the front verandah asks visitors to wait here and a plaque announces that former president. Apj abdul Kalam dedicated the monument to the nation in 2003. But there are no visitors this day and the guard at the entrance says there arent any on most days.
Sometimes people who visit the temple see the board and drop in, says Srinivasa Achari, a shopkeeper near Ramanujans house. Outside, sarangapani sannidhi Street is milling with autorickshaws and cars, the temple gopuram (dome) towering over the jumble of buildings. The young Ramanujan must have walked down this road to the kumbakonam Town High School, which he joined in 1898. A framed catalogue at Ramanujans house says that it was at the kumbakonam school that the 15-year-old came across arrs book, synopsis of Elementary results in Pure mathematics, a book that was to influence the young boy in ways few imagined. Robert Kanigels 1991 biography of Ramanujan, The man Who Knew Infinity, from which the movie has been adapted, provides the most authentic account of Ramanujans early life. He writes that Ramanujan used to challenge his teachers even as a class iii student.
When he died, he was only 32, a life too short to leave too many footprints, but we go looking for them anyway. Kumbakonam is where it begins. The temple town in Thanjavur district, 270 km south of Chennai, was where ramanujan grew up after his birth in Erode on December 22, 1887, to k srinivasa iyengar, a clerk with a cloth merchant, and homemaker Komalatammal. With at least two English-medium schools and a high school even in those days, the temple town was the sixth largest town of Madras Presidency when Ramanujan lived there. Kumbakonam cant claim to have made any great strides since then.
Its still a temple town, with at least a dozen shrines within the town limits, the lanes leading to each temple filthier, more cramped than it would have been when it groomed a budding mathematician more than a century ago. A few yards from the sarangapani temple, the largest vaishnava temple in Kumbakonam, is the house where ramanujan spent his childhood with his parents and two younger brothers. Next door to the non-vegetarian Pandian Hotel, this house was once part of an agraharam or traditional Brahmin neighbourhood with houses that opened into narrow lanes. Blue pillars hold up the low ceiling and the roof of the single-storeyed structure is covered with red baked tiles. Ramanujans bedroom is intact, with a cot by the blue window. A signboard in English says, ramanujan used to sit here for hours looking through the window. A century has passed since ramanujan left this room, but he could step right back in and little would have changed, like a passage to the infinite.
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In the Chennai of the early 1900s, few would have noticed the young accountant sprinting down beach road to his Madras Port Trust office north of Marina beach. His coat tail flapping in the breeze, his flowing hair coming undone, a brick red namam (tilak) on his forehead, he would hurry down the road, past the University of Madras. A couple of years later, that sprint was to end at the gates of the university, which took in the young, dark man, Srinivasa ramanujan, as a mathematics research fellow. The rest is infinity — and the subject of The man Who Knew Infinity, matthew Browns movie that opened the International Film Festival of India in goa, with dev patel playing the mathematician. In 1914, four years after he began his fellowship at Madras University, plan ramanujan boarded the ss nevasa and set sail for England. When he returned in 1919, he was bent with illness, fighting malnourishment and suspected tuberculosis. He died in 1920, a promising life cut short but not before he had stunned the west with his intuitive theorems in mathematics. With over 3,900 theorems and results to his credit, his formulae, scribbled on scraps of paper, continue to be relevant to problems at the frontiers of mathematics. His infinite series for pi (symbol) was among tree his most celebrated findings.
Ramanujan fell ill with what some doctors believed to be online tuberculosis. After improving to a degree, ramanujan returned to India. Once in India, ramanujan found his family in disorder. His wife from an arranged marriage was fighting with his mother and no one seemed to get along. In this atmosphere, ramanujan fell ill again and this time unfortunately, he did not recover. He died at the young age of thirty, continuing to do mathematics until the day he died. He never saw his friend Hardy again and years later when Hardy was himself near death, hardy would claim that the best work of his life was to discover and help Ramanujan. Updated: December 6, 2015 8:56:45.
he found as a young man. Soon he was devoting all of his time to his mathematical research to the exclusion of school and work. Lacking a degree or a good job, ramanujan began to send his research to English mathematicians, hoping that they might take an interest in his work. Many English mathematicians dismissed the letters as not worth pursuing but. Hardy, one of the most distinguished mathematicians of his time took them seriously and contacted the young man. Eventually hardy, convinced of Ramanujan's genius, arranged to have ramanujan come to cambridge. Once the young man arrived, hardy and Ramanujan developed some of the most important math of the century. Despite his success in mathematics, the devout Brahmin Ramanujan was alienated in England. His strict devotion to his vegetarian diet, his lack of exercise, and his long hours of work led to an eventual physical breakdown.
Hardy, was the most respected English mathematician of his day and the product of the best schools in England. Ramanujan was a genius, but it took hardy to recognize and bring the young man to England. For several years, their collaborations at Cambridge produced mathematical research that is still be mined today for interesting results. The book begins in south India where ramanujan was born and lived most of his life. He came from a poor family in an obscure village outside mom of the south Indian capital of Madras. His family was poor but they were also members of the most distinguished part of Indian society, a caste known as Brahmins. For centuries the Brahmins were the priests and educated class of Hindu India and in Ramanujan's time, they continued to strictly observe their strict regimens of purity and religious devotion.
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The man Who Knew Infinity: a life of short the genius, ramanujan. Summary study guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections: This detailed literature summary also contains. Topics for Discussion and a, free quiz on, the man Who Knew Infinity: a life of the genius, ramanujan by robert Kanigel. The man Who Knew Infinity is a book about two important mathematicians, their relationship, and how it shaped their lived and the world around them. One of these men, ramanujan was a genius of unusual strength who would go on to develop some of the most interesting mathematical conjectures and theorems of the century, if not of all time. Yet he had only the most bare education in backwaters of south India. The other man,.