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The Early Mathematical Manuscripts Of Leibniz - Illustrated Paperback – 20 Jul 2007

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Product details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Merchant Books (20 July 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603860231
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603860239
  • Product Dimensions: 18.9 x 1.3 x 24.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,667,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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From the Back Cover

The impact of the work of German mathematician GOTTFRIED WILHELM LEIBNIZ (1646-1716) on modern science and technology is all but incalculable, but for starters, his notation for infinitesimal calculus-which he developed independently of Newton-remains in use today, and his invention of binary counting is the basis for modern computing. He was a powerfully influential philosopher as well, and is still considered, alongside Descartes and Spinoza, one of the great 17th-century rationalists. With no complete edition of his numerous writings on the wide range of subjects he expounded upon available even today, this 1920 collection of his early mathematical manuscripts-as well as some third-party commentary on them-continues to be essential to anyone wishing to understand Leibniz's contributions to modern science. Here students of the history of science and math lovers alike will enjoy Leibniz's thoughts on the infinitesimal calculus, including a series of manuscripts from 1675, 1676, and 1677, plus the essays "Leibniz in London" and "Leibniz and Pascal" by German scholar C.I. Gerhardt.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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By Ioan JIPA on 4 Jan. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent !
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Miraculous 21 May 2007
By G. Gec - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It always puzzled me that we study Voltaire's literary attack on Leibniz's ideas, but we never discuss the ideas Voltaire was responding to. We study forms of mathematics which were designed to argue against Leibniz's more radical mathematical ideas, but we aren't led through the history of how the ideas were developed. I have become convinced that it is not by accident. Leibniz was absurdly ahead of his time in the early 18th century and he is still ahead of our time today. These translations give us a small glimpse of this genius which seems to permeate all important fields of life.

These earlier works show Leibniz in a more confident phase-where he believed his ideas could change the entire world in his lifetime. His political theory, philosophy and mathematics (we don't use Newton's esoteric calculus we use Leibniz's) did achieve this, but it took much longer-and sadly much is still not known to today's generation of university students and their teachers. This well-done book provides a peak into Leibniz's revolutionary world of conceptual truth.
Bad job in digitally remastering 24 Mar. 2014
By Susan K. - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a copy of some out of print version. The remaster loses some lines at the bottom of some pages. And it is not even a clean master. It has notes from some previous owner. I don't recommend it.
More History Than Math 13 Jan. 2014
By Jennifer Yerxa - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was looking for a clue as to what Leibniz was thinking when he developed Calculus. This book didn't so much answer my question, but raise others, as well as make clear how paltry my own history background is. The book is a series of translations and commentaries on some of Leibniz's writings which give the reader a transparent window into the period: the mathematicians being read, the mathematicians respected, the current notation, and what Leibniz was getting up to. Additionally, because the commentaries come from different eras, the reader witnesses the shift in attitude toward Leibniz and the subsequent approaches to understanding his work. The papers presented are not all complete and they do not present a seamless flow of ideas, which at first can be frustrating. But upon sticking with the reading, it becomes apparent that this bumpy nature is itself a translation of the manner in which mathematics develops.
A very unique book 25 May 2010
By D. J. Paz - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The contents of this book are invaluable for anyone wishing to understand the history of calculus. Personally, I think the translator has a bit of a bias against Leibniz; however, his footnotes and insights are very helpful for the modern reader to be able to understand the most important discovery in mathematics ever.
6 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Why did he even bother? 26 April 2009
By Ibn Nafa'a - Published on
Format: Paperback
Reading leibniz is always a pleasure as well as quite a challage and on the more difficult subjects, such as this book, one would hope to find help in the rather extensive footnotes provided by this translator. Much to my disappointment the footnotes was never meant to clarify anything, save perhaps for the utter contempt the translator has for Leibniz. For the first two letters chosen, the footnotes exceeded the the text by far and none of it dealt with the subject beyond casting doubt over leibniz' explanations on how he came to perceive his calculus. Several footnotes were so hateful, that you wonder why J.M. Childs even bothered to translate the letters in the first place. He could well have written all that in a seperate book, leaving that garbage to the die hard leibniz haters in London and elsewhere.

The dislike of the translator and the extent of it, also leaves you wondering whether the more difficult to understand passages is even translated correctly. I would advice caution reading this book as the intent seems to be to establish that it was a secret Barrows-Newton correspondence (one not even provided evidence for) and not Leibniz' own work, that developed the differential calculus. For a more fair assessment of Leibniz' calculus, look up Bruce directors "Riemann for anti-dummies" and the work of the Worldwide LaRouche Youth Movement. These people with whom i am associated has some of the best presentations of the tradition of Leibniz, kepler, Cusa, Riemann, Gauss et. al.
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