- Save 10% on selected children’s books, compliments of Amazon Family Promotion exclusive for Prime members .
50 Mathematical Ideas You Really Need to Know Hardcover – 1 Jan 2007
Special offers and product promotions
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
From the Inside Flap
Who invented zero? Why 60 seconds in a minute? How big is infinity? Where do parallel lines meet? And can a butterfly's wings really cause a storm on the far side of the world?
In 50 Mathematical Ideas You Really Need to Know, Professor Tony Crilly explains in 50 clear and concise essays the mathematical concepts - ancient and modern, theoretical and practical, everyday and esoteric - that allow us to understand and shape the world around us.
Beginning with zero itself and concluding with the last great unsolved problem, 50 Ideas:
Introduces the origins of mathematics, from Egyptian fractions to Roman numerals; Explains the near-mystical significance of pi and primes, Fibonacci numbers and the golden ratio; Tells you the things they didn't at school - what calculus, statistics and algebra can actually do, and the very real uses of imaginary numbers; Illuminates the Big Ideas of relativity, chaos theory, fractals, genetics and hyperspace; Reveals the unspoken reasoning behind Sudoku and code cracking, lotteries and gambling, money management and compound interest; Explores the latest mind-shattering developments, including the solving of Fermat's last theorem and the million-dollar question of the Riemann hypothesis.
Packed with diagrams, examples and anecdotes, 50 Mathematical Ideas is the perfect overview of this often daunting but always essential subject. For once, mathematics couldn't be simpler.
About the Author
Tony Crilly is Reader in Mathematical Sciences at Middlesex University, having previously taught at the University of Michigan, the City University in Hong Kong, and the Open University. His principal research interest is the history of mathematics, and he has written and edited many works on fractals, chaos and computing. He is the author of the acclaimed biography of the English mathematician Arthur Cayley.
Top customer reviews
The book has a few flaws though. Some concepts could do with a little more material, as sometimes the brevity of the explanation leaves one puzzled and unfulfilled. Also, the writer assumes the reader has a firm grip on the very basics of mathematics, which may not be the case for everyone. And lastly sometimes the way a concept applies to real world situations isn't made sufficiently clear.
Nonetheless this is a great book, recommended for everyone who has an interest in mathematics and wants a clear, no-nonsense, plain language explanation of all those fantastic ideas that you see in TV shows like Numb3rs, but who lack the time and inclination to wrestle their way through inaccessible tomes of mathematical knowledge. This book is very much accessible and a joy to read.
So it has something for everyone and is written in a way that is not too dry.
Each idea presented here gives the germs of background which clearly the author hopes will take root in the conciouness of the reader suffice for them to go and examine more for themselves.
I suspect that the target audience would be young students of pre-university age, perhaps taking up some quantative methods courses to support their chosen subject as well as some older, yet educated readers who may have not got so far into their mathematical development but who wish to aquaint them selves with the basics.
Each chapter offers a taste, a tidbit of knowledge which whets the appetite for more and urges the reader on to consider the subject matter as a whole, underpinning other sciences and physical subjects such as engineering, while seeking to broaden the mind with the mathematical universe.
An open mind can lead to imaginary constructions which sees the puzzles contained within the book as part of a unified theory of mathematics which connects them all together: just think of theories of multi-dimensional constructs and the neuron net just glows.
I really like this book. The lack of detail serves to offer a clear perspective for thinking about the general nature of each puzzle although the limitations of only four pages can result in some zealous editing. Still it is a fun filled and exciting book which I am happy to recommend as an essential addition to any home library.