Blaise Pascal, French mathematician

Blaise Pascal, French mathematician

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Credit: PAUL D STEWART/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), French mathematician, physicist, inventor and philosopher. At 19, Pascal invented a mechanical calculating machine based on cogs, also known as a pascaline (calculator). Pascal also made contributions to geometry and hydrostatics. He worked with French mathematician Fermat, founding probability theory. The SI unit of pressure, the Pascal, was named after him to honour his work on hydrostatics.

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