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0 (number)

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0 (zero) is a real number and is the integer between 1 and -1, which signifies a value of nothing. It is also a numerical digit and used as a placeholder for place value systems.

History

The number zero was invented twice - once in India and once in Mesoamerica. This invention is considered especially significant because it required a considerable cognitive leap to achieve and because it opened the door to a host of new applications for numbers.

Further Reading

  • Bourbaki, Nicolas. Elements of the History of Mathematics (1998) - can be found (in limited form) on Google Books
  • Kaplan, Robert. The Nothing that is: A Natural History of Zero (1999) - can be found (in limited form) on Google Books
  • Seife, Charles. Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea (2000) - can be found (in limited form) on Google Books