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Statue of Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khwarizmi in 360°

Outside the West Gate is the statue of Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī, a famous scientist born here, in Khiva in 783 AD.

However has spent most of his life in Baghdad, capital of present day Iraq because at that time Baghdad was the cultural and scientific center of the entire Islamic world. He worked there as a scholar at the House of Wisdom (a sort of an academy) and studied the ideas of Greek, Roman and Indian mathematicians.

The English term 'algorithm' still reminds us of him because his name was rendered as Algoritmi in Latin. Based on the Indian numeral system, he developed a decimal system with the zero number as a place-holder that is now used everywhere on earth.

Furthermore, he has been characterized as the father of algebra, described in his mathematical book written approximately 830 AD. It explains the solution to quadratic and linear equations of six varieties. His system was called Calculation by Completion and Balancing or al-jabr wa-l-muqābala in Arabic. The first part of the name, al-jabr means completion and involves the process of moving a subtracted quantity to the other side of an equation. The second part, al-muqabala stands for the process of subtracting a number from both sides of an equation.

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