# Kasner, Edward (1876–1955)

Edward Kasner was an American mathematician at Columbia University best remembered for introducing
the words googol and googolplex into the
popular mathematical lexicon. He is also well known as the coauthor, with
James Newman, of *Mathematics and the Imagination*, first published
in 1940. In a later edition of this (1967), he spoke about the term **mathescope**,
which was coined by the science reporter Wilson Davis after listening to
one of Kasner's public lectures. In Kasner's words: "It is not a physical
instrument; it is a purely intellectual instrument, the ever-increasing
insight which mathematics gives into the fairyland which lies beyond intuition
and beyond imagination." His main field of research was differential
geometry, which he studied in its applications to mechanics, cartography,
and stereographic projections, though he also wrote papers on circle packing
and on the horn angle and studied an extension of right triangles to the
complex plane.