We use cookies to provide you with a better onsite experience. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies in accordance with our Cookie Policy.

Scientific American presents Math Dudeby Quick and Dirty Tips. Scientific American and Quick and Dirty Tips are both Macmillan companies.

It’s not often someone suggests that knowing some math could make you the life of the party, but that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Yes, a properly timed delivery of a few fun facts about the famed Fibonacci sequence just might leave your friends clamoring for more—because it really is that cool. So, without further ado, let’s continue our exploration of sequences that we began a few articles ago by jumping right in and talking about Fibonacci’s famous sequence.

Review of Mathematical Sequences
As we’ve discussed, sequences in math are fairly simple things—they’re just lists of numbers arranged in some particular order. The number of sequences that can be written is infinite since any random list of numbers will do. But some types of sequences are decidedly non-random—one of which being the geometric sequence. In such a sequence, each element is obtained from the previous one by multiplying it by the same fixed number. For example: 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, is a geometric sequence where each successive element is obtained by multiplying the previous one by 2.

Jason Marshall, PhD, is a research scientist, author of The Math Dude's Quick and Dirty Guide to Algebra, and host of the Math Dude podcast on Quick and Dirty Tips.