Correspondence about Coordinate Transformations


About

One of the most recognisable and celebrated parts of On Growth and Form are the Coordinate Transformations of the forms of similar animals.
However, D'Arcy did not invent it without help from his correspondents, which included mathematicians, scientists and artists. Marshall, a mathematician and St Andrews alumnus, helped Thompson with this part of the book and many fundamental questions were discussed in their correspondence. Paleontologist and keen Artist, Heilmann, provided many of the drawings seen in On Growth and Form, whilst Neville contributed by writing to Thompson about the mathematics of 3D coordinates.

For more information about coordinate transformations click here.

For a more detailed mathematical explanation of the method click here (or pdf here)

<i>Human and Chimpanzee skulls</i>
Human and Chimpanzee skulls
<i>Human and Chimpanzee skulls</i>
Human and Chimpanzee skulls

Thompson tried to improve his knowledge about coordinate transformations prior to writing the book.
He attempted to learn about 3D coordinate transformations and admitted that it would be advantageous to do so as it is the 3D form of the object which should be understood, not just the drawing. D'Arcy also states that there are limitations in dealing with transformations solely in 2D-coordinates. However, only a short subsection of the chapter on transformations in On Growth and Form mentions 3D coordinates.

Correspondents

Eric Harold Neville

John Marshall

Alfred North Whitehead

Introduction

   

Overview & D'Arcy's Life

   

On Growth and Form

   

Heilmann & Shufeldt

   

Maths of Transformations

   

Correspondence

   

D'Arcy and Mathematics

   

Coordinate Transformations

   

Logarithmic Spirals

   

Forms of Cells

   

Forms and Mechanical Efficiency

   

Shrinkage

   

Wartime and D'Arcy

   

The Leg as a Pendulum

   

Recreational Maths

   

Fibonacci Sequence

   

Cell-Aggregates

   

All Correspondence Links

Claxton Fidler

   

Eric Harold Neville

   

John Marshall

   

Alfred North Whitehead

   

Charles Robert Darling

   

Peter Guthrie Tait

   

William Peddie

   

Geoffrey Thomas Bennett

   

Dorothy Wrinch

   


Main Index Biographies Index


The support of The Strathmartine Trust towards this website is gratefully acknowledged    

Alice Gowenlock & Indre Tuminauskaite © July 2018
Copyright information
School of Mathematics and Statistics
University of St Andrews, Scotland

The URL of this page is:
http://www.mcs.st-and.ac.uk/~dat/