Leonardo da Vinci the Engineer

Leonardo Da Vinci's inventions

Come see the exhibit on Leonardo da Vinci: The Engineer at the Lichtenberger Engineering Library.  The exhibit includes models of some of his engineering feats:  a catapult and a multiple sling designed as war machines to hurl stones, a paddleboat and a great kite.  Stop by and see pictures of his underwater breathing machine, a steam cannon, a gigantic crossbow and the Vitruvian man.

Included in the exhibit case are facsimiles from the University’s Special Collections of da Vinci’s original manuscripts printed from the collection of the Institute de France.  Twelve manuscripts written between 1492 and 1516 were brought back to Italy by Francesco Melzi, his favorite pupil, after da Vinci’s death.  These facsimiles feature over five thousand pages of drawings and notes in his characteristic “mirror-image” hand-writing, running from right. The sections on display in the case are those related to:  the military art, optics, geometry, the flight of birds and hydraulics.

300px-Da_Vinci_Vitruve_Luc_Viatour

One of Da Vinci’s famous drawings is of the Vitruvian Man, a drawing created in 1490, is accompanied by notes based on the work of the architect Vitruvius and Book III of his treatise De Architectura.  Vitruvius the architect described the human body with having ideal proportions.  The drawing, pen and ink on paper, depicts a male figure in a square within a circle.  The drawings sometimes referred to as the “Proportions of Man,” and named in honor of the architect Vitruvius, represent da Vinci’s blend of art and science.  Encyclopaedia Brittanica online states that da Vinci “believed the workings of the human body to be an analogy for the workings of the universe.”

 

Those of you interested in hydraulics may know about Enzo Macagno.  In 1960, Macagno became interested in studies of the history of fluid mechanics and the life of da Vinci.  Along with his colleague and late wife, Matilde, Macagno became an international expert on da Vinci, publishing numerous articles and IIHR monographs on the interpretation, analysis, and synthesis of da Vinci’s codices and manuscripts as they relate to fluid-flow and transport phenomena.  You will find more information in the exhibit case and two monographs from Special Collections on Macagno’s work.

This is just a sampling of what can be seen at the Lichtenberger Engineering Library’s Leonardo Da Vinci: The Engineer exhibit. Stop by to learn more!

 

References

Capra, Fritjof. The Science of Leonardo.  New York: Doubleday,2007. Engineering Library Q143.L5 C37 2007 http://infohawk.uiowa.edu/F/?func=find-b&find_code=SYS&local_base=UIOWA&request=004251437

da Vinci, Leonardo, 1452-1519.  Leonard da Vinci: scientist, inventor, Artist.  Ostfildern-Ruit [Germany]: Verlage Gerd Hatje, 1997. Engineering Library N6923.L33 A4 1997 http://infohawk.uiowa.edu/F/?func=find-b&find_code=SYS&local_base=UIOWA&request=007162629

Kemp, Martin.  Leonard Da Vinci Experience, Experiment and Design.  Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2006. Art Oversize FOLIO N6923.L33 K449 2006. http://infohawk.uiowa.edu/F/?func=find-b&find_code=SYS&local_base=UIOWA&request=003637253

Laurenza, Domenico.  Leonardo on Flight.  Baltimore: The John Hopkins University press,2004. Engineering Library TL540.L4 L38 2007. http://infohawk.uiowa.edu/F/?func=find-b&find_code=SYS&local_base=UIOWA&request=004220622

Moon, Francis C.The Machines of Leonardo Da Vinci and Franz Reuleaux.  New York: Springer, 2007. Engineering Library TJ 230 .M66 2007. http://infohawk.uiowa.edu/F/?func=find-b&find_code=SYS&local_base=UIOWA&request=004382572

Museo Nazionale Della Scienza E Della Technologia Leonardo Da Vinci.(2014).Retrieved from http://www.museoscienza.org/english/leonardo/manoscritti/

Posted in Uncategorized

Xpress Class Wednesday April 2nd–Endnote Basic

April 2nd – Endnote Basic (30 minutes) 

Introduction to an online citation management system that is free for everyone at the University of Iowa. This is replacing RefWorks which the University will no long be supporting as of December 2014.   Endnote helps you to manage all your references for a paper (or many papers) as well as create the incite citations and bibliographies in a wide variety of formatting styles.  Taught by Steve Ostrem (Reference and Instruction Librarian, Main Library) The web version of Endnote Basic will be taught not the full client version!

Posted in Uncategorized

Come Celebrate Pi Day 3.14,1:59!

PI

On March 14 at 1:59 pm we gather together to celebrate the most famous and mysterious of numbers.  That Pi is defined as the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter seems simple enough but Pi turns out to be an “irrational number.”  Computer scientists have calculated billions of digits of pi, starting with 3.14159265358979323…, no recognizable pattern emerges in the digits.  Scientists could continue calculating the next digit all the way to infinity and still have no idea which digit might emerge next.  To these facts can be added that March 14 is also Einstein’s birthday.

Pi is a number that has fascinated scholars for 4,000 years.  The mathematical history of pi comes from around the world.  In 1900 B.C., the Babylonians calculated the area of the circle by taking 3 times the square of its radius.  One Babylonian tablet (ca 1900-1680 B.C.) indicates a value of 3.125 for pi, which is a close approximation. Around 1650 B.C., the Rhind Papyrus, a famous document of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom, also calculated the area of a circle which gave the approximate value of 3.1605.

 

Archimedes

In 250 B.C., the Greek mathematician Archimedes calculated the circumference of a circle to its  diameter.  Archimedes  value , was not only more accurate; it was the first theoretical rather than measured calculations of pi.  Archimedes knew that he had not found the value of pi but only an approximation. He used a fairy simply geometrical approach for his calculations.  See how he did it by launching the interactive model on this pbs.org site: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/physics/approximating-pi.html

 

 

Zu Chongzhi (429-501 AD?) was a Chinese mathematician and astronomer, who was not familiar with Archimedes method. He calculated the value of the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Unfortunately, his book has been lost so very little is known of his work.

In 1761, a Swiss mathematician Johann Heinrich Lambert (1782-1777) proved the irrationality of pi.  An irrational number is a number that cannot be made into a fraction where the decimal never ends or repeat sequences.

By 1882, F. Lindeman proved that pi was transcendental, that is, that pi is not the root of any algebraic equation with rational coefficients.  This discovery proved that you can’t “square the circle” which was a problem that vexed many mathematicians up to that time.  Another fascination for mathematicians throughout history was to calculate the digits of pi, but until computers, less than 1,000 digits had been calculated.  With the calculations of the computer, millions of digits have been calculated.

REFERENCES:

Adiran, Y. E. O.  The Pleasures of Pi, e and Other Interesting Numbers.  Singapore: World Scientific Pub., c2006.  Engineering Library QA95 .A2 2006

Alsina, Claudi.  Icons of Mathematics:  An Exploration of Twenty Key Images. Washington, D.C.:  Mathematical Association of America c2011.   http://site.ebrary.com/lib/uiowa/Doc?id=10728529

Beckman, Petr.  The History of Pi. Boulder: Colorado: The Golem Press, 1977.  Main Math Collection QA484 .B4 1977

Chongzhi, Zu.  Encyclopedia Britannica.  Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica Inc., 2014.  Web, 10 March 2014.    Http://wwwbritannica.com / EBchecked/topic/1073884/Zu-Chongzhi.   Main Reference Collection AE5 .E363 2010

Exploratorium. (2014). Pi Day. Retrieved from http://www.exploratorium.edu/pi/

Gillings, R. Mathematics in the Time of the Pharaohs. Boston, MA: MIT Press, 89-103, 1972.  Main Math Collection QA27.E3 G52 

Gardner, Milo. “Rhind Papyrus.” From MathWorld–A Wolfram Web Resource, created by Eric W. Weisstein. http://mathworld.wolfram.com/RhindPapyrus.html

A facsimile of this papyrus can also be found at the
Main Oversize FOLIO PJ1681 R5 1927
Main Math Collection FOLIO PJ1681 R5 1927

Hobson, Ernest William.  Squaring the Circle and Other Monographs. New York: Chelsea, 1953.  Main Math Collection QA467 .H62 1953 

KHANACADEMY. (2014). A Song About A Circle Constant. Retrieved from https://www.khanacademy.org/math/recreational-math/vi-hart/pi-tau/v/a-song-about-a-circle-constant

Libeskind, Shlomo.  Euclidean and Transformational Geometry: A Deductive Inquiry. Sudbury, Mass.:  Jones and Bartlett Publishers, c 2008. Engineering Library QA453 .L53 2008 

Mackenzie, D. “Fractions to Make an Egyptian Scribe Blanch.” Science 278, 224, 1997.

McCall, Martin W.  Classical Mechanics:  From Newton to Einstein: A Modern Introduction.  Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2010.  Engineering Library QC125.2 .M385 2011 

Robins, G. and Shute, C. The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus: An Ancient Egyptian Text. New York: Dover, 1990. Main Math Collection QA30.3 .R63 1987 

Weingardt, Richard.  Circles in The Sky:  The Life and Times of George Ferris.  Reston, VA,: American Society of Civil Engineers, C.2009.  Engineering Library TA140.F455 W45 2009


 

Posted in Uncategorized

Xpress Class Tomorrow Wednesday March 5th–Endnote Basic (30 minutes)

Introduction to an online citation management system that is free for everyone at the University of Iowa.   It helps you to manage all your references for a paper (or many papers) as well as create the incite citations and bibliographies in a wide variety of formatting styles.  Taught by Amy Blevins (Clinical Education Librarian, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences) http://goo.gl/N9eS1v

The web version of Endnote Basic will be taught not the full client version!

Posted in Uncategorized

TODAY! Library Xpress: Standards

The Engineering Library is offering a 15 minutes class TODAY at 2:30 pm in the Library Computer Classroom (2001C SC).

Introduction to standards, regulations and specifications.  Learn how to access a wide variety of standards including ASTM, ISO, ADA, NFPA (Fluid), and the US Code of Federal Regulations.  Featuring a new database, TechStreet, to gain electronic access to these standards and more.   Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)Want to learn more about how to use Standards? Visit 2001C SC at 2:30pm Wednesday February 26 for a 15min class! http://goo.gl/N9eS1v

Posted in Uncategorized

Learn Compendex in 15 minutes!

Want to learn more about how to use Compendex? Visit 2001C SC at 2:30pm Wednesday, February 19 for a 15min class!

This class will include an overview of Compendex.  The most comprehensive bibliographic database of scientific and technical engineering research available, covering all engineering disciplines. It includes millions of bibliographic citations and abstracts from thousands of engineering journals and conference proceedings. When combined with the Engineering Index Backfile (1884-1969), Compendex covers well over 120 years of core engineering literature. Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)

Posted in Uncategorized

Engineering Library Xpress Classes

The Engineering Library is offering 15 minutes classes (unless noted) every Wednesday at 2:30 pm.  They will take place in the Library Computer Classroom (2001C SC) and are open to everyone.

The schedule:

January 29th – Learn Patent Searching

Basic introduction to what is a patent and how to complete patents searches.  Patents provide inventor exclusive rights to products they produce and also give great detailed information on certain products and methods.  Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)

February 5th  – Web of Science:  Multidisciplinary citation database  (30 minutes)

Introduction to Web of Science. A multidisciplinary database covers over 12,000 of the highest impact journals worldwide, including Open Access journals and over 150,000 conference proceedings.  You’ll find current and retrospective coverage to 1898  in the sciences, engineering, social sciences, arts, and humanities.  Taught by Sara Scheib (Science Education and Outreach Library, Science Library)

February 12thScifinder:  One Stop Shop for Chemistry Information (30 minutes)

Overview of Scifinder.  SciFinder gives you instant access to the world’s largest curated collection of information on chemistry and related research produced by Chemical Abstract Service – a division of the American Chemical Society. Taught by Sara Schieb (Sciences Education and Outreach Librarian, Sciences Library)

February 19th - Compendex:  Everything Engineering

Overview of Compendex.  The most comprehensive bibliographic database of scientific and technical engineering research available, covering all engineering disciplines. It includes millions of bibliographic citations and abstracts from thousands of engineering journals and conference proceedings. When combined with the Engineering Index Backfile (1884-1969), Compendex covers well over 120 years of core engineering literature. Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)

February 26thStandards: Guides and Regulations for Building and Evaluating Resources

Introduction to standards and specifications.  Learn how to access a wide variety of standards including ASTM, ISO, ADA, NFPA (Fluid), and the US Code of Federal Regulations.  Featuring a new database, TechStreet, to gain electronic access to these standards and more.   Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)

March 5th – Endnote Basic (30 minutes)  

Introduction to an online citation management system that is free for everyone at the University of Iowa.   It helps you to manage all your references for a paper (or many papers) as well as create the incite citations and bibliographies in a wide variety of formatting styles.  Taught by Amy Blevins (Clinical Education Librarian, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences)

The web version of Endnote Basic will be taught not the full client version!

March 26thProtein Database:  3-D Protein structures

Taught by Chris Childs (Health Sciences Education and Outreach Librarian, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences)

April 2ndRefWorks & WriteNCite (30 minutes)

Introduction to an online citation management system that is free for everyone at the University of Iowa.   It helps you to manage all your references for a paper (or many papers) as well as create the incite citations and bibliographies in a wide variety of formatting styles.  Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library)

April 9th  – Inside PubMed

Introduction to PubMed.  This database contains over 19 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books.  Taught by Xiaomei Gu (Health Sciences Clinical Education Librarian, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences)

April 16th – Keeping up with Your Research: Alerts and Notifications

Learn to set up alerts and notifications on some of your favorite databases and library resources so that you can keep up to date on the latest information in your area of research.  Taught by Kari Kozak (Head, Lichtenberger Engineering Library).

April 30th – Endnote Basic (30 minutes)  

Introduction to an online citation management system that is free for everyone at the University of Iowa.   It helps you to manage all your references for a paper (or many papers) as well as create the incite citations and bibliographies in a wide variety of formatting styles.  Taught by Amy Blevins (Clinical Education Librarian, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences)

The web version of Endnote Basic will be taught not the full client version!

Posted in Uncategorized