Unfinished Game Pascal, Fermat, and the Seventeenth-Century Letter That Made the World Modern

ISBN-10: 0465018963

ISBN-13: 9780465018963

Edition: N/A

Authors: Keith J. Devlin

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Description:

In the early seventeenth century, the outcome of something as simple as a dice roll was consigned to the realm of unknowable chance. Mathematicians largely agreed that it was impossible to predict the probability of an occurrence. Then, in 1654, Blaise Pascal wrote to Pierre de Fermat explaining that he had discovered how to calculate risk. The two collaborated to develop what is now known as probability theorya concept that allows us to think rationally about decisions and events.InThe Unfinished Game, Keith Devlin masterfully chronicles Pascal and Fermat's mathematical breakthrough, connecting a centuries-old discovery with its remarkable impact on the modern world.
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Book details

List price: $20.00
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 3/23/2010
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 208
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.682
Language: English

Born in England in 1947 and living in America since 1987, Keith Devlin has written more than 20 books and numerous research articles on various elements of mathematics. From 1983 to 1989, he wrote a column on for the Manchester (England) Guardian. The collected columns are published in All the Math That's Fit to Print (1994) and cover a wide range of topics from calculating travel expenses to calculating pi. His book Logic and Information (1991) is an introduction to situation theory and situation semantics for mathematicians. Co-author of the PBS Nova episode "A Mathematical Mystery Tour," he is also the author of Devlin's Angle, a column on the Mathematical Association of America's electronic journal. Devlin lives in California, where he is dean of the school of science at Saint Mary's College in Morgana. He is currently studying the use of mathematics to analyze communication and information flow in the workplace.

Note to the Reader
Preface
Monday, August 24, 1654
A Problem Worthy of Great Minds
On the Shoulders of a Giant
A Man of Slight Build
The Great Amateur
Terrible Confusions
Out of the Gaming Room
Into the Everyday World
The Chance of Your Life
The Measure of Our Ignorance
The Key Letter from Pascal to Fermat
Index
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