View 'Congruent Triangles'
and 'Journey to the Center of a Triangle'
free on the Internet Archive
As a World War II WAC, Katharine Marie Seremal was involved in investigating the ENIAC computer for bomb survey analysis, which fueled her interest in mathematics. Bruce Haynes Cornwell, who in WWII set up radio transmitters in the South Pacific, eventually returned to earn a degree in cartography at at University of Wisconsin. Bruce created graphics for a television station in Madison, WI, where he was also engaged with the local public radio station. The Cornwells were married in 1956, and eventually moved to Brooklyn, NY. Like many other makers of quality academic film, the Cornwells found it made better financial sense to have additional careers. Katharine became a consultant specializing in executive compensation, while Bruce taught at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, the New School, and the School of Visual Arts.
Bruce has stated that his interest in math films was influenced by his seeing Disney’s ‘Donald in Mathmagic Land,’ which prompted his comment "anyone with half a brain and one hand tied behind his back could make a better film." Bruce passed away on January 26, 2012, and Katharine on March 4, 2013, at the age of 93.
For Houghton Mifflin, the Cornwells, in conjunction with Duane W. Bailey, made a series called 'Calculus in Motion,' consisting of eight 3 minute, color, animated, silent 8mm loops. They were available as either Technicolor Magicartridges or Kodak Cassettes. They are: Functions, Limits, Derivatives, Concavity and Points of inflection, Rolle's Theorem and the Mean Value Theorem, The Definite Integral, The Fundamental Theorem, and Taylor Polynomials.
They also made a series for Houghton Mifflin in 1974 called 'Relativity: a Series of Computer animated Films, in conjunction with Robert Ehrlich, again on Super 8mm silent cartridges. All are 4 minutes in length. The films are: Coordinate Transformations, The Doppler Effect and the Twin Paradox, Length Contraction, The Michelson-Morley Experiment, Simultaneity is Relative, The Speed of Projectiles: Sound and Light, Time Dilation, and World Lines.
For the Mathematical Association Of America in conjunction with Stanford University, a number of films were produced at the Cornwells' studio for the MAA Calculus series, under various directors. We do not have the names of most of these films, but among them are:
Cornwell films distributed by the International Film Bureau (IFB):
Cornwell films distributed by Film Associates (BFA)