Mathematics and Probability
Pascal contributed to several mathematic discoveries. For instance, his work on what is known as the Pascal triangle influenced Isaac Newton’s discovery of the general binomial theorem for fractional and negative powers. Pascal published a treatise on the cycloid, which involves mathematically expressing the curves of points created by a revolving circle.
In his correspondence with mathematician Pierre de Fermat, Pascal sought
to find mathematical solutions to two problems that involved gambling:
the problem of the dice and the problem of points. The problem of the
dice concerns whether we can determine how many times one must throw a
pair of dice before one expects a double six.
The problem of points concerns how to divide the stakes if a game of dice
is incomplete. In exploring the possible solutions to these problems,
Pascal and Fermat gave foundation to the study of probability: study of
the possible outcomes of given events together with their relative likelihoods