It’s hard to explain Möbius transformations with a flat illustration in a textbook. But two professors at the University of Minnesota found that a 3-D animation lets them show the mathematical concept in a way that seems to have sparked the imaginations of a wide range of viewers. The video has been watched more than one million times since it was put on YouTube.
The professors are Douglas N. Arnold, a professor of mathematics and director of the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications, and Jonathan Rogness, an assistant professor of mathematics. They have something of a fan club on YouTube, with more than 4,000 comments on the video. Not everyone claims to have understood the lesson, though. “Thanks for trying to explain it,” wrote one commenter, “but its still a bit over my head.” —Jeffrey R. Young