Math is one of the greatest powers in the universe. No one can escape from math, not people, not businesses, not even nations. History shows that great nations and empires have sometimes been built up and other times have been destroyed by the simple power of math.
More than four thousand years ago, in the Middle East, the ancient Sumerians created an amazingly advanced system of mathematics. They scratched symbols into clay tablets to represent numbers in a type of writing called cuneiform. The Sumerians created their mathematics in order to do business, to figure taxes, to make contracts, to set up loans and to calculate interest.
What’s truly amazing is that we even have fragments of Sumerian problem sets that were used to train accountants. From these, we can see that they understood the awesome power of compound interest. When you are paid interest on your savings, you quickly begin getting interest on the interest, which causes your savings to grow at an exponential rate.
http://helenair.com/lifestyles/health-med-fit/math-is-stronger-than-nations/article_debcc7d2-681f-11e1-8f86-0019bb2963f4.html (via allmesopotamia)