Blog Archives

The marvel of Islamic geometric design

geo-m-desgn

Source: theguardian.com

By: Alex Bellos

To paraphrase Monty Python, what has Islam ever done for us? You know, apart from the algebra, the trigonometry, the optics, the astronomy and the many other scientific advances and inventions of the Islamic Golden Age.

Well, if you like art and interiors, there’s always the stunning patterns that grace mosques, madrasas and palaces around the world.

Islamic craftsmen and artists – who were prohibited from making representations of people in holy sites – developed an instantly recognizable aesthetic based on repeated geometrical shapes.

The mathematical elegance of these designs is that no matter how elaborate they are, they are always based on grids constructed using only a ruler and a pair of compasses.

Islamic design is based on Greek geometry, which teaches us that starting with very basic assumptions, we can build up a remarkable number of proofs about shapes. Islamic patterns provide a visual confirmation of the complexity that can be achieved with such simple tools.

Dust off your old geometry set, and let’s see how.

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White House says US can’t stop ‘tsunami’ of boycott and isolation if Israel won’t end ‘occupations’

US Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Philip Gordon

By: Philip Weiss

Source: http://mondoweiss.net/

The press is expressing marvel/shock at a speech by Philip Gordon, a White House adviser, saying that Israel’s ongoing “occupations” and settlements are driving its international isolation and the boycott movement.

“Philip Gordon blasted Israel,” says PowerLine.  “[H]is oration read as though Gordon is a recent arrival from Planet Zog who has mistaken the Middle East for Finland,” says David Horovitz. His paper captures the story:

“Top Obama official blasts Israel for denying Palestinians sovereignty, security, dignity.

“‘How can Israel have peace if it’s unwilling to delineate a border, end the occupation?’ asks White House Mideast chief, Phillip Gordon, in blistering Tel Aviv speech”

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