Islamic mathematicians of the middle ages developed many of the fundamental cornerstones of modern mathematics. The word algebra comes from the Arabic al-jabr, "restoration". The field of algebra was developed by Muslim mathematicians in the Middle East and India.
Algorithms, the processes of mathematics and computer science, are named after the great Arabic mathematician al-Khwarizmi.
The Prophet Mohammed enjoined Muslims to seek learning. The enlightened cultural traditions of Islam ensured that the mathematical works of previous cultures, such as the ancient Greeks, were preserved rather than destroyed. Euclid's geometry is only known to us because it was preserved in Arabic by Muslim scholars.
Our modern number system is called Hindu-Arabic in recognition of its origins in the number systems of India and Arabia. Our number system depends fundamentally on the number 0 (zero) which was invented by Arab mathematicians. A numeral is sometimes called a cipher (hence encipher, decipher) from the Arabic word sifr meaning zero.
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Author: Adrian Baddeley, University of Western Australia