Archimedes of Syracuse (287 BCE-212 BCE) was so ahead of his time that even now we take many of his discoveries for granted. He calculated properties of circles, spheres, cylinders, and cones, writing equations that we still use today. He calculated [p] and came very close to discovering calculus, nearly beating Sir Isaac Newton by 2,000 years. He discovered why things float or sink. He learned why levers work. This creative genius saw math everywhere, from seashells to the fearsome war machines—like the catapult, missiles, and even a mirrored laser—he made to defend his hometown from the Roman navy. In the mind of this master of thought, math truly held the secrets to the universe.