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Blaise Pascal
(June 19, 1623  August 19, 1662)
French Physicist, Mathematician, Philosopher
Influences
Education
Career
 No official or academic positions
Ideas and Contributions
Pascal was one of the most notable mathematicians and physicists of 17th
century and a renowned writer of mystical Christian literature. Together
with Pierre de Fermat, Pascal worked out the mathematical theory of probability
to help Fermat why he lost money at dice. Probability is used in actuarial,
mathematical, and social statistics and for calculations in theoretical
physics. He also deduced Pascal's law of fluids and investigated geometric
infinitesimals. "His methodology reflected his emphasis on empirical experimentation
as opposed to analytical, a priori [deductive] methods, and he believed
that human progress is perpetuated by the accumulation of scientific discoveries
resulting from such experimentation." (Microsoft Encarta)
Because behavioral events are eminently uncertain, Pascal's work was
of utmost importance to the development of psychology as a science, especially
after subsequent elaboration of this work by men such as Christian Huygens,
Abraham de Moivre, Adolphe Qu,telet, Karl Gauss, and Francis Galton. (Zusne,
326)
Publications
 Lettres provinciales (16561657)
 Pens,es or Thoughts (1670 )
References: 15, 27, 28
Image Courtesy of the National Library of Medicine
Thursday, 14Nov2013 04:39:17 EST
