Day 251 Mile 251: Numbers, Blocks and Bach

maths sculpture squares black whiteDay 251 Mile 251: Numbers, Blocks and Bach. As the title would suggest it is the 251st day of the year. Once you get this far through interesting numbers start to become fewer and further apart however 251 is the 54th prime number and the smallest number that can be formed in more than one way by summing three positive cubes.

251 = 23+33+63 = 13+53+53

On the lawn outside one of the university buildings is Creation by John Robinson. The geometric theme of the sculpture comes from the Borromean Rings, an emblem of the Borromea family of Renaissance Italy, in this case working with a basic shape of a square. The emblem consists of three rings, no two of which are linked, but which together form a structure which cannot be taken apart. To my mind that seems to encapsulate a lot of the maths around the 251 cube thing quite nicely 🙂

2 cubed 3 6 251
2 cubed +3 cubed + 6 cubed

So today’s run started from there. Given the very mathematical nature of today I have opted for Bach on the headphones, fugue always providing a very tangible expression of mathematical processes but in sound rather than the visual sculpture which marks the start and end point of today’s run. Without wishing to geek out too much the opening tune comes around a lot but transformed in different ways and various ratios to form the entire piece. (Don’t let the cover put you off!)

I like this recording here is a great mix of old fashioned propriety combined with an amazing standard of accuracy and brutal, bow arm physicality. There is an wonderful dichotomy between the precision of the fingers, providing pitch and timing against the judged power, verging on distortion, of the bow contact executed by the opposite hand 🙂

The other thing is that, as a performance, it is long enough to last throughout the running of a mile, and then some!

I’m running a mile each day everyday for 2017. If you feel you can sponsor me please do, as all the money raised will go to the Cleft Lip & Palate Association (CLAPA) who provide services all across the UK to support people affected by it.

Distance: 1609.7 meters recorded

(1 mile = 1609.34 m.)
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Thanks as ever for all the support!

Ed

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