who invented numbers?
The latter information indicates that numbers were in use several
thousand years BC in Babylon and Egypt; and the Maya, who had no contact with the old world, had numbers too. I believe numbers go back to the very beginning of the human race. [ The Bible says that Adam noticed that there were two of each kind of animal and only one of him; that's numbers!
Look up "Numerals" in an encyclopedia,
such as Britannica. You will probably find some suppositions about how numbers began in the form of pebbles or sticks, knots in a cord, etc., used to keep track of the number of animals in a herd and things like that. So counting of property was a very early use of numbers. The invention of money increased the usefulness of numbers. Then measuring of lengths for building introduced a new kind of number - not just a counting number; a length can include fractions.
Now, with computers, all kinds of information are converted into
numbers (binary numbers, specifically) in a computer's memory. Numbers are used by scientists to describe how the world works - expressing the laws of nature in equations. They are used by engineers, architects, musicians, ... name any profession and you can think of how they use numbers.
Numbers were "invented" (or discovered, depending on one's
philosophical viewpoint) long before history. This happened when people realized that they could think about "how many" without needing to know "how many WHAT?" - that there is an idea of number that is separate from the world of things that can be counted.
Mathematics has developed in part through the extension of the idea of number to new types of number. Mathematicians added negative numbers to the counting numbers, inventing the INTEGERS. Then they added fractions to get RATIONAL NUMBERS; then they discovered that they needed numbers that were not rational (IRRATIONAL), thereby extending numbers to the REAL NUMBERS. Later they added IMAGINARY NUMBERS to the reals, making the COMPLEX NUMBERS. There are still other things that can be called numbers, such as the TRANSFINITE NUMBERS. Many of these types of numbers were used long before they were named and carefully studied. http:// /question/?qid=20060611215446AA96gfT ]