One of the first Pascal’s biographies published in Russia was called “The French sage Vlas ....” Today, the sage has almost reached his anniversary – he was born on June 19, 1623. His dad, a tax inspector and a person close to the science, taught a gifted boy: his father researched a curve, which in his, and not his famous son's, honor is called "Pascal's snail.” The son has enough of his own achievements though: already at the age of 16, he proved the theorem on a hexagon inscribed in a conical section, now known as Pascal's theorem. At the age of 20, he felt sorry for his father, who was tormented by his calculations, and came up with a calculating machine, for which Pascal was subsequently rewarded with the programming language bearing his name. He laid the foundations for the theory ofprobability, deduced the basic law of hydrostatics, now bearing his name, and confirmed Torricelli's assumption of the existence of atmospheric pressure, for which the unit was named after him. And the perpetual motion which he proposed also proved to be useful, but not where Pascal had expected. Now, anyone can see it in a casino – this is a roulette wheel.
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