Story of Mathematics

ISBN-10: 0691120463
ISBN-13: 9780691120461
Edition: 2004
List price: $30.95 Buy it from $3.00
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Description: The mysterious tally sticks of prehistoric peoples and the terrestrial maps used for trade, exploration, and warfare; the perennial fascination with the motions of heavenly bodies and changed perspectives on the art and science of vision: all are  More...

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Book details

List price: $30.95
Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 7/26/2004
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 192
Size: 7.00" wide x 8.25" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.232
Language: English

The mysterious tally sticks of prehistoric peoples and the terrestrial maps used for trade, exploration, and warfare; the perennial fascination with the motions of heavenly bodies and changed perspectives on the art and science of vision: all are testament to a mathematics at the heart of history. This visually stunning volume takes the reader on an illustrated tour of mathematics across cultures and civilizations, bringing to life a world of important ideas and-rarely supposed-great intrigue and charm. The development of mathematics can be seen in a wealth of images, from the richly illuminated manuscripts of the Middle Ages to the deeply unsettling art of Dali and Duchamp, from the austere beauty of Babylonian clay tablets to the delicate complexity of computer-generated pictures. These images, and many others, are lavishly reproduced to accompany a text that travels from the dawn of Chinese and Indian civilizations to the scientific and digital revolutions of our day. Including portraits of household names such as Kepler and Copernicus as well as lesser-known but equally compelling figures like Niels Henrik Abel and Leonhard Euler,The Story of Mathematicsis a rich amalgam of history, biography, and popular science. Readers will come away understanding how and why mathematics evolved as it did--of how it entered and remained close to the center of every area of human activity. Explaining mathematical concepts without equations, Richard Mankiewicz enables us to appreciate this essential intellectual occupation without "doing the math."

Foreword
Preface
Year zero
Watchers of the skies
The pythagorean theorem
The elements
Ten computational canons
Mathematical sutras
The house of wisdom
The liberal arts
The renaissance perspective
Mathematics for the common wealth
The marriage of algebra and geometry
The clockwork universe
Mothematics in motion
Oceans and stars
The quintic
New geometries
Dialects of algebra
Fields of action
Catching infinity
Of dice and genes
War games
Mathematics and modern art
Machine codes
Chaos and complexity
Acknowledgements & select bibliography
Index

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