My math isn't adding up, what am I missing?

Hi all,

This course is blowing my mind in the most enjoyable ways.
I have minimal understanding of math so I am following along with a calculator as Robert explains.

In Session 1 a few of my calculations don’t match with Robert’s:

  1. At 1:25:00 Robert gives the speed of light in miles/second as 0.864. Google gives me 186282. So .864 and 862 don’t seem to match up. What am I missing?
  2. At 1:25:30 Robert points out “222, that’s ɸ. That’s .618 of 360”. I think he means ɸ-1, and when I calculate (ɸ-1)*360 I get 222.49223595. Robert references 222.22 on the slide, which doesn’t seem to match up with 222.49. Where did I go wrong?
  3. On the next slide, ɸ is labeled as 223° which does match with 222.49 but not 222.22. Why is that?

Any thoughts are much appreciated!


I too have taken notice of the latitude Robert allows. I have heard him say in his Philosophical Geometry video series, when he was relating frequency to music notes, that he allows some difference. I also found places in those videos where I believe he transposed some numbers. Robert said 468hz for the B note but I think he meant 486hz and he used 504hz for C, but I think he meant 513hz.

I don’t know if this helps - but I view what Robert is showing as a system to itself - in other words, we in the western modern world have couched our mathematics in a particular vain where precision is all important. However, nature’s creations are based on harmonics and ratios – that means there may be limit to a ratio, in real terms, related to harmonics. For example, I was looking lately at the number pi and found that within Rodin mathematics, the number for pi can be a limited and recursive number-- not an extension of the infinite number set. This seems more correct to me when I think of a rose bounding petals around the center of flower - while near perfect, how perfect is real perfect? At what point does perfect become a defect? Nothing is created is perfect - it is all NOVEL --(ugh sorry hate that word now) . Anyway hope you get my drift. Novel behavior allows nature to expand and adjust to current real life limitations. That means ratios used in nature are not precise but approach precision. So maybe that’s a part of why Robert’s numbers are - what they are.

I like what your reference to nature and flowers. Robert did say that the tuning (frequencies) can vary between musicians.

Thanks for your input. Thinking in terms of harmonic relationships rather than absolute accuracy is useful.

In Session 4 Robert says that constants are oscillations.
That seems connected but I don’t understand it. I made a thread specifically for exploring that concept: "Constants are oscillations." How does this work?