I often ask my students (I’m a maths teacher in Thailand) “What is ratio?” and the answer always shoots straight back: “Ratio is ratio”. True, ratio is ratio, but that doesn’t really mean anything? I decided to Google

I ll do a simple explanation of the golden ratio here and put the mathematics at the bottom of the page. I know from the look on my students’ faces that maths can be utterly boring. Here's the ratio:

*ratio*, and guess what I found –*the golden ratio*. I decided to investigate.I ll do a simple explanation of the golden ratio here and put the mathematics at the bottom of the page. I know from the look on my students’ faces that maths can be utterly boring. Here's the ratio:

The Golden ratio is not only used in Maths, but in art, design, geometry, cosmoly, etc. In fact, almost in all aspects of our lives. Now what is The Golden Ratio, and how do we use it?

Before you switch off, the golden ratio basically means that when you have a rectangle, the width is about two-thirds that of the length, 1.618 to be more exact. Like the rectangle below:

Before you switch off, the golden ratio basically means that when you have a rectangle, the width is about two-thirds that of the length, 1.618 to be more exact. Like the rectangle below:

I agree, it is hardly spectacular. But let’s consider this: the shell of a snail:

That’s quite something! And now that I have your attention, let’s look at the Mona Lisa. I remember my first wife, an avid art student telling me the golden rule in art is to divide the canvas horizontally and vertically into three equal tridrants, and place the object in the first or last tridrant:

*“Without mathematics there is no art.” Luca Pacioli*

And the golden ratio also works in architecture. Look at this:

Remember Ferdinand Porche, the car guy from Stuttguard. Look at his logo. It follows the golden ratio:

*The Stuttgart emblem in the center of the Porsche logo has a width that is a golden ratio of the midpoint of the width of the shield to the left and right sides. The top of the emblem is at the golden ratio of the midpoint of the height of the shield to the top and bottom*.

I know you thinking what about the IPad or IPhone. Did Jobs know about the golden ratio, or more accurately, did his designers inform him about the golden ratio? I remember reading on the side of a ream of paper one of his quotes:”Design is more than looks, it is how something works, how it feels”. Perhaps he was trying to say ‘

*Form follows function’*– a slogan we have here at Teakmills use. It translates into Latin as

*‘formam sequitur functionem.'*

Is the simple business card an example of the golden ratio? Not exactly. Compare it with the rectangle at the top. It’s similar, isn’t it? Let’s do the maths: 54mm x 85mm. 54 x 1.618 = 87.4mm. Close, very close!

I did the label on my pepper packet using the golden ratio. And don't be surprized if I tell you I do all my designs with Vector Engineer - a CAD program. It makes it easy to do the dimensions and ratios, but it drives the printers crazy getting it into a printable format.

Remember the old wife and the canvas? Place the object in the first or last tridrant? Funny enough, I took this photo of a cambodia beer bottle with the sunset as backdrop. I put the bottle slap bang in the centre – horizontal and vertical – and it was perfect!

Does that mean the golden ratio doesn't apply, or that the exception proves the rule? To answer - if you spent some time on it, you will discover where the golden rule was used. Compare it with the Porche logo.

Does that mean the golden ratio doesn't apply, or that the exception proves the rule? To answer - if you spent some time on it, you will discover where the golden rule was used. Compare it with the Porche logo.

And talk of first wife, is this the golden rule?

Now how do we translate this into pepper mills? Meaning the golden ratio. It’s a little tricky considering that the average width of an 8 inch mill is less than three inches. Let’s do the maths – the 8 inch mill should be about 5.5 inches thick (diameter) to fit into a golden triangle. Not practical.

Would it help if we do a set of pepper mills - that gives as 8 inches in height and about 5 in width. We're getting closer.

What about the head and body – could it fit the ratio – I'm bending the rules a bit here. The golden ratio applies to a rectangle – length and breadth, not to two lengths, but its interesting to see if I could do the body 1.68 times that of the head – and the answer: Yes, close - very close!

And here's the solution – the golden ruler. How does it work? Simple. Take a ruler, say 10cm long. Now multiply it with the golden number 1.618

10 x 1.618 = 16.18

16.18 x 1.618 = 26.18

26.18 x 1.618 = 42.36

And you end up with a ruler looking like this:

Would it help if we do a set of pepper mills - that gives as 8 inches in height and about 5 in width. We're getting closer.

What about the head and body – could it fit the ratio – I'm bending the rules a bit here. The golden ratio applies to a rectangle – length and breadth, not to two lengths, but its interesting to see if I could do the body 1.68 times that of the head – and the answer: Yes, close - very close!

And here's the solution – the golden ruler. How does it work? Simple. Take a ruler, say 10cm long. Now multiply it with the golden number 1.618

10 x 1.618 = 16.18

16.18 x 1.618 = 26.18

26.18 x 1.618 = 42.36

And you end up with a ruler looking like this:

I have used this rule on my pepper mills (after I had designed it). It’s clear that the golden ruler intersects it on each segment and/or turning point of a segment’s curve. Here's the picture:

I designed my pepper mill before I had learned about the golden ratio. I was impressed that it followed the rules of the golden ratio. When I learned about the golden ratio, I started using these ratios to design my logo, labels, boards, etc.

Now you ask me why don’t the big names use the golden ratio to design a cutting board. After all, it would be perfect to fit a cutting board into a rectanglethat follows the golden ratio. My answer, I don’t know, but I do. Look at my cutting board, steak board and serving tray – they all follow the golden ratio. And it works, they're perfect! Customers see them and they buy them! No wonder I call them the perfect cutting board.

Now you ask me why don’t the big names use the golden ratio to design a cutting board. After all, it would be perfect to fit a cutting board into a rectanglethat follows the golden ratio. My answer, I don’t know, but I do. Look at my cutting board, steak board and serving tray – they all follow the golden ratio. And it works, they're perfect! Customers see them and they buy them! No wonder I call them the perfect cutting board.