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Maths 1001: Absolutely everything that matters in mathematics Paperback – 18 Oct 2010


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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Quercus (18 Oct. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848660634
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848660632
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 3.2 x 24.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 46,421 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Dr Richard Elwes is a writer, teacher and researcher in Mathematics and a Visiting Fellow at the University of Leeds. He contributes to New Scientist and Plus Magazine and publishes research on model theory. Dr Elwes is a committed populariser of mathematics which he regularly promotes at public lectures and on radio.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By mrb on 13 Mar. 2012
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book to help brush up on my mathematics knowledge after getting an A level in Pure Mathematics more years ago than I care to remember! It is proving quite helpful in that regard although I find that I need to use other books as well. I wouldn't recommend it for complete beginners in mathematics although it may whet their appetite for maths as it includes such delights as sections on Logic and Mathematical Physics! It is certainly very broad in scope, covering the main branches of mathematics, and takes them to a fairly advanced level. It's equally good for those working on their own at home or following a structured course at school, college or university.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Charles Parry on 6 Jun. 2012
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This book is brilliant. As befits an author who writes for popular science magazines, it's beautifully written in a concise and understandable way with little use of jargon. By necessity, given its role as a popular book and its format of bite-sized topics, it over-simplifies some topics (but never to the extent of devaluing them) so if you're new to maths and looking for an introduction this is possibly a little too advanced for the most part but if you've already had some exposure to the beauty of maths and want to explore some more then it's excellent. It's not quite as comprehensive as its subtitle would suggest but it comes pretty close to being so. Historical asides add to the pleasure of reading through it which can be done by dipping piecemeal into it (in a 'random walk') or, as I found myself doing and against my better judgement, cover to cover, occasionally refering back and forth to follow up the broad thread of a pervasive concept. There are very occasionally some minor gaffes (which the author readily acknowledges and provides corrections for in the errata on his web site) and the graphics are often of limited help (to me anyway) but these do not distract from a superb book which is easily one of the best I've ever read on the subject.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Simon Morgan on 14 Sept. 2013
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The title and cover bely how well executed this book is. The way I see it, there are two main things that make it stand out from most mathematics books I've read (both textbooks and "popular science").

The first is that it doesn't get bogged down in details. Although details are definitely important in mathematics (and any rigorous field of study), they are not necessarily (I would argue probably) what you want to focus on when first approaching a topic. By adopting a broad overview the author has focused on the "low hanging fruit" in terms of interest piquing to cognitive load ratio.

Secondly, the author seems to understand the value of explaining the _why_ rather than the _how_ of ideas. That is he tries to explain why things are the way they are rather than giving a series of obtuse equations and expecting you to either just figure it all out yourself or accept it via appeal to authority. The whole purpose of a book is to impart understanding to the reader. Yes, in the case of textbooks the reader is expected to put in a certain amount of work to understand the material but that is what exercises are for.

Rant over!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By rosy44 on 26 Nov. 2010
Format: Paperback
This book exactly fits its description. As a dip in resource that gives you an authoritative but brief introduction to many many aspects of mathematics it is excellent. The quality and clarity of the print is very good despite the difficulties involved in producing a book on a subject that uses so many symbols. I would recommend having this book on hand to anyone embarking on a mathematics course at intermediate or senior level.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Paul P. Mealing on 22 Jun. 2011
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This is a book that you dip into then find yourself reading more than you intended, such is its accessibility and easy-to-read style. Elwes covers everything from fundamental arithmetic to mathematical physics to logic to philosophies of mathematics. It's divided into logical subject areas, but with an extensive index in the back, so you can read through a mathematical area like geometry, for example, in a logically progressive fashion, or reference a specific topic. A general book on mathematics for the student or anyone with a curious mind.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By D. O. Hoare on 22 Feb. 2011
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Anyone buying Maths 1001 as a text book will be disappointed as it is in reality an encyclopedia. In that context it is excellent covering, as it says in the title, absolutely everything that matters in Mathematics. Dip into it for the answer to any maths question and you'll find a reference to help you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dr Dombo on 3 Feb. 2013
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If you like maths at a hobby level, this is a great book. Bite-sized explanations of many theorems, conjectures, formulas, rules, fallacies and paradoxes. Have you heard of the hairy-ball theorem? The blue-eyed suicides? Cantor dust? They're all here! (Hilbert's hotel, oddly enough, is not.) The book would have benefited from some more illustrations and omission of the chapter on mathematical physics (which is hardly about maths at all).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By no on 6 Aug. 2012
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Splendid book wish I had had it years ago. The scope is breathtaking, with sufficient depth to give a good feel for the why's and wherefores of each topic
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