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We are a worldwide social network of freethinkers, atheists, agnostics and secular humanists.

There is a new science journalist at The Guardian, Alex Bellos, and I really enjoyed his first article. A gynecologist in Belgium measured the ratio of height to width in the wombs of 5,000 using ultrasound, and he found that at the peak of a woman's fertility (ages 16 to 20), the ratio approaches 1.6, the Golden Ratio. This ratio is found all over in nature, from sea shells to the seeds in flowers, and for some, it is the nature's "perfect number". In a Fibonacci series, where each number is the sum of the previous too, the ratio of any two numbers is or approaches 1.618. Interestingly, when girls are born, the ratio of uterine length to width is 2, it reaches the golden ration by peak fertility, and it decreases to an average of 1.46 in old age. The gynecologist who carried out the study was inspired by the observation that experienced gynecologists can tell if a woman will be fertile just by looking at the proportions of her uterus, so he decided to measure the ratio; we still don't know what it means, but it is a neat, intriguing little finding. The golden ratio is found elsewhere in the human body, for example the ratio of the 3rd to second phalanx (finger bones) approaches 1.618.

Golden ratio discovered in uterus

Dutch gynaecologist measures reproductive organs of 5,000 women and finds that the most fertile have 'mathematically perfect' dimensions

The study suggests that when women are at their most fertile, between 16 and 20, the proportions of their uteruses reflect the golden ratio. Photograph: Alamy

The golden ratio is a scientific nugget that that has, for at least two thousand years, belonged as much to mysticism as to mathematics.

It is just a number – 1.618 – but to its devotees the ratio expresses aesthetic perfection, and can be found wherever there is beauty.

For example, they argue that of all the rectangles in the world the most pleasing to the eye has a ratio of length to width of 1.618.

And of all the smiles in the world, they maintain that the most beautiful have their central incisors 1.618 wider than their lateral incisors, which are 1.618 wider than their canines, and so on down through the molars.

There are web pages devoted to where else on the human face you can find the golden ratio, which is also known as the golden section, golden proportion or golden mean.

Even though I am sceptical about many of these claims, it is undeniable that 1.618 can be found quite easily on the human form – even on ugly people.

For example, if you mark the tips of the knuckles on your finger with a pen, the distance between first and second knuckle is about 1.618 times the distance between the second and the third.

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The Fibonacci sequence is named after Leonardo of Pisa, who was known as Fibonacci. Fibonacci's 1202 book Liber Abaci introduced the sequence to Western European mathematics,[2] although the sequence had been described earlier in Indian mathematics.[3][4][5] 

 

Check this wiki article: Patterns in nature

 

I just saw a tweet from a mathematician who takes issue with "1.6" instead of "1.618"

I feel I do need to react to claim Golden Ratio found in uterus The Golden Ratio is a PRECISE irrational number,not 1.6

Well, I'm sure the True Golden Ratio cannot be found in nature. Nor can True Recursive Fractal Sets. There are other factors that contribute to the growth of anything. I think the point of the uterus observation is that the ratio of 1 to about 1 and two thirds is found all over the place. Like partial recursion. 

It is probably Livio's job to make sure the distinction between maths and nature is maintained. But I find it admirable that our quasi-obsessive pattern identification system can come up with such a gem.

The Golden Ratio is 

= 1. 61803 39887 49894 84820 45868 34365 63811 77203 09179 80576 28621 35448 62270 52604 62818 90244 97072 07204 18939 11374

From Physlink.com 

Did you memorize it? :-)

Why? I just go to physlink and go straight to the page its on. That is one thing I have learnt you don't have to memorise everything as there are plenty of sources to get the info and these days the internet makes it even easier to obtain info. You  just have to memorise where the info came to shorten the search time!

Were I to memorise it I would only take it to the sixth significant number 1. 618 033/ 9 but I would round the sixth number to 1. 618 034 as the seventh number is more than 5!

Haha! I was kidding of course.

I knew that you were!

I knew that you knew that I was! :-))

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