EAWLC Science Lecture: Is Mathematics Invented or Discovered?


On New Year’s Day in 2021, an article on mathematics rushed to the second place on the Zhihu Hot Question List, with over 15 million views and more than 1.3 million readings. The question was: Is Mathematics Invented or Discovered? (数学是人类的发明,还是发现?) 

What makes a mathematics question into the hot list that normally only social hotspots can enter?  The article neither lists abstract mathematical formulas nor rises to the level of obscure philosophy concepts.  Instead, it starts from Raphael’s masterpiece “The School of Athens”, and tells from the perspective of the history of science and technology, where mathematicians used “infinity” as a tool. From there, a whole new world has been created. 

The East and West Learning Connections proudly presents Mr Yingfeng Zhang, the author of the article in question, to give us an informative and insightful lecture on topics touched by the article yet have not been discussed in detail, such as: 

  • Do animals know mathematics?
  • How did early civilizations discover mathematics?
  • How did ancient Greeks invent infinity?
  • Why is our universe finite?
  • What other secrets are hidden in Raphael’s painting?

About the lecturer:

Mr Yingfeng Zhang, one of the founding directors of The East and West Learning Connections, is an advocate for generalist education in science and technology for teenagers, college students and technology enthusiasts. 

He founded QHOW Technology in Toronto in 2019, an educational hub that equips participants with knowledge of technology, business, and hands-on experience in product design and development.  Yingfeng holds a Master’s degree in Software Engineering from Shandong University, China.  Before he moved to Canada four years ago, he had worked as a science and technology educator  and consultant for over a decade, training software developer employees on cutting-edge technologies and scientific ideas, and guiding university  students to develop software products, and  helping them write and publish technology books. 

He is an Honourable Contributor (2014) on Zhihu, the Chinese equivalent of Quora.  He has written more than 100 answers in the fields of education, mathematics, science, and history. He has around 210K followers on Zhihu, and his articles were saved by readers for more than 400K times. 

Currently, Yingfeng is writing a book, The Formal Universe,  on the history of science, and some of the unsolved, interesting questions.  The article, “Is Mathematics an Invention, or a Discovery?” Is the first chapter of the book.

Grown-ups or young students, everyone is welcome to join us, and enjoy an enlightening  lecture that Yingfeng is bound to bring with his rich knowledge and witty style!


Time: Saturday April 3, 2021 at 8-9:30 P.M.  Eastern Time

Language: Mandarin

Cost: Free

Zoom link:


Meeting will open at 7:45pm, capacity is 100 participants. First come, first serve.

For inquiries, please contact us at info@eawlc.org.  Thanks!









  • 动物也会数学吗?
  • 早期文明人类如何发现数学?
  • 古希腊数学家如何发明无穷?
  • 宇宙为什么是有限的,而不是无限的?
  • 拉斐尔名画《雅典学院》中还有哪些秘密?



张英锋,加拿大趣好科技(QHOW Technology)创始人,致力于科技通才的教育,培训大中学生及科技爱好者成为懂科技、懂商业、能设计和开发产品的科技人才。他还是东西联学社理事会(前身学东西俱乐部)的创始成员,共同推动俱乐部在2021年成为正式注册的联邦非营利组织。




  • 时间: 4月3日周六 晚8:00到9:30 (加东时间)
  • 使用语言:中文普通话
  • 免费Zoom公益讲座,限员100人。
  • 会议厅7:45打开,位置有限先到先得。
  • 注册Zoom会议请点击下方链接



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