Jo Roislien

Associate Professor
Department of Mathematical Sciences, Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Oslo, Norway
I love mathematics not because of its beauty or because of its role as a great scientific tool. I love it because of how it makes me feel. It’s personal. It’s emotional. Collaborating with various visual artists I want to create visually strong films that will engage viewers on a personal level. Using a contemporary cinematic language, inspired by music videos, commercials and feature films, our vision is to take the intellectual and abstract and make it visible, physical and relatable.
Chasing the world's largest number
3:25
Dr. Jo Roislien / Christian Holm-Glad (director) / Bulldozer Film
2014
As a kid I could sit for hours browsing through the Guinness Book of World Records. And there, squeezed in among sports records, long rivers and the world’s tallest man, was a number so large that I still struggle to understand it. The world’s largest number. As a kid I found this number magical and mystical. And as a grown-up scientist I wanted to go back to my mathematical roots, bringing curious viewers of all ages and backgrounds with me.

“Chasing the World’s Largest Number” is a personal, poetic and philosophic math road trip through California, guiding the viewer through the mental journey it is to grasp truly large numbers, via the universe, human cells, travel planning and paradoxes of the infinite.