Despite being the last digit to come into use in the numerical system, the zero plays a central role in mathematics. During the 2nd century CE, Ptolemy began using a small circle with a long bar above it to symbolize zero. Because it was used alone, not just as a placeholder, this Hellenistic zero was perhaps the first documented use of a number zero in the Old World. Four centuries later, an Indian mathematician wrote a book of rules governing the use of the zero. Is zero an odd or even number?
George Bernard Shaw
Back in the day
Grace Kelly was an Oscar-winning American actress who appeared in many films, including Dial M for Murder and Rear Window. In 1956, she married Prince Rainier III of Monaco and became Her Serene Highness Princess Grace, an event that marked her retirement from acting. The couple had three children, one of whom, Albert II of Monaco, is the principality's reigning Sovereign Prince. Kelly died in a car accident in 1982. Why was she chosen to marry the Prince of Monaco?
Born on a day like today
The unbelievable but true story of Larry Walters began in July, 1982, when Walters, a California truck driver, constructed a homemade aircraft out of a patio chair and 45 helium-filled weather balloons and lifted off from his girlfriend's backyard. Walters quickly rose to an unexpected height of 16,000 feet (4,876 m) and drifted toward Long Beach Airport, where passing airplane pilots reported him to the control tower. How did he make it back down?