# The History and Significance of the Number Zero in Mathematics and Digital Technologies

TLDR The concept of zero took time to be expressed as a written number, but it is now used to represent the absence of a value. Zero was first used in the Babylonian sexagesimal numbering system, and later developed as a full-blown number with mathematical rules by the Indian mathematician Brahmagupta. It was introduced to Europe by Arabs and fully adopted in the Renaissance, and has special properties in mathematics and computer science.

### Timestamped Summary

00:00
This episode is about the history and significance of the number zero in mathematics and digital technologies.

01:30
The concept of zero took some time to be expressed as a written number, but its primary use for us is in representing the absence of a value in a number.

03:00
The earliest use of zero as a written number appeared in the Babylonian sexagesimal numbering system, which used a space or double slash to indicate the absence of a value, but it wasn't the same as a true zero.

04:21
The Indian mathematician Brahmagupta is credited with developing the concept of zero as a full-blown number with mathematical rules, while Europe was late to adopt zero and a decimal-based system of numbers due to philosophical difficulties with the idea of nothing.

05:44
Zero and decimal numbers were introduced to Europe by Arabs, who adopted the decimal system from India, and it wasn't until the Renaissance in the 16th century that zero was fully adopted in Europe.

07:03
Zero is a unique number that cannot be divided by and has special properties in mathematics and computer science.

08:25
Zero is an important number that means absolutely nothing, yet absolutely everything, and it wasn't always something that humans had.