From the Magic of Science to the Science of Magic. Past, present and (blended) future.

From the Magic of Science to the Science of Magic. Past, present and (blended) future.

Author: Fernando Blasco – Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain


  • Miquel Duran – Universitat de Girona, Spain
  • Silvia Simon – Universitat de Girona, Spain

Since the Middle Ages, Magic has used mathematical and scientific (yet uncommon) experiments to entertain, surprise and create awe in people. This demonstration will address the history of such magic and science relationship, while providing current ideas and looking into the future. Because it seems that the mid-21st century will consist of practical interconnection between brains and machines, and also practical usefulness of artificial intelligence.
Our group has been working in a Magic & Science project for several years, especially in the fields of Mathematics and Chemistry. We are active in searching and adapting existing games and experiments (even classical ones), while creating others towards Science Fairs, Workshops, demonstrations and special events.

This communication thus will focus on the use of Magic and Science as a tool to address the changing relationship over time between science and the arts and humanities. Because use of Magic to communicate Science concepts allows for ample connection to Arts and Humanities. Two particular cases, among others, will be stressed: one of us (FB) is currently using Mathematical Magic in innovative projects in Architecture Undergraduate Projects. Moreover, we are also involved in creating online games on the Periodic Table of the Elements. The session will be organised with physical demostrations and hands-on activities. They will be focused at matter related with time, such as calendar tricks and time dependent chemical reactions.

All in all, we think that this innovative way to communicate science may be quite useful in different places and environments, while not requiring especially high budgets nor a lot of time and effort, while allowing for strong attention from the Public so they may receive messages effectively.

Sílvia Simon will deliver her experience on Low-Cost Communication of Science, Miquel Duran on Physics and Chemistry aspects, and Fernando Blasco will lead this activity and focus on mathematics.

The author has not yet submitted a copy of the full paper.

Presentation type: Demonstration
Theme: Time