The History of Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jacqueline Stedall
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191633968
Category: Mathematics
Page: 144
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Mathematics is a fundamental human activity that can be practised and understood in a multitude of ways; indeed, mathematical ideas themselves are far from being fixed, but are adapted and changed by their passage across periods and cultures. In this Very Short Introduction, Jacqueline Stedall explores the rich historical and cultural diversity of mathematical endeavour from the distant past to the present day. Arranged thematically, to exemplify the varied contexts in which people have learned, used, and handed on mathematics, she also includes illustrative case studies drawn from a range of times and places, including early imperial China, the medieval Islamic world, and nineteenth-century Britain. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Timothy Gowers
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 9780192853615
Category: Mathematics
Page: 143
View: 4420

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This book aims to explain, in clear non-technical language,what it is that mathematicians do, and how that differs from and builds on the mathematics that most people are familiar with from school. It is the ideal introduction for anyone who wishes to deepen their understanding of mathematics.

The History of Physics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: J. L. Heilbron
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0191507040
Category: Science
Page: 184
View: 2961

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How does the physics we know today - a highly professionalised enterprise, inextricably linked to government and industry - link back to its origins as a liberal art in Ancient Greece? What is the path that leads from the old philosophy of nature and its concern with humankind's place in the universe to modern massive international projects that hunt down fundamental particles and industrial laboratories that manufacture marvels? This Very Short Introduction introduces us to Islamic astronomers and mathematicians calculating the size of the earth whilst their caliphs conquered much of it; to medieval scholar-theologians investigating light; to Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton, measuring, and trying to explain, the universe. We visit the 'House of Wisdom' in 9th-century Baghdad; Europe's first universities; the courts of the Renaissance; the Scientific Revolution and the academies of the 18th century; and the increasingly specialised world of 20th and 21st century science. Highlighting the shifting relationship between physics, philosophy, mathematics, and technology - and the implications for humankind's self-understanding - Heilbron explores the changing place and purpose of physics in the cultures and societies that have nurtured it over the centuries. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

1089 oder das Wunder der Zahlen

eine Reise in die Welt der Mathematik
Author: David J. Acheson
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9783866470200
Category:
Page: 189
View: 1269

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Das Buch beginnt mit einem alten Zaubertrick - Man nehme eine 3-stellige Zahl, etwa 782, kehre sie um, ziehe die kleinere von der größeren ab und addiere dazu die Umkehrung. Also - 782 - 287 = 495, dann 495 + 594. Und schon ist man mitten in der Wunderwelt der Mathematik, denn das Ergebnis ist immer - 1089. Mit solchen und vielen weiteren Beispielen aus Alltag, Geschichte und Wissenschaft gelingt es David Acheson, die faszinierende Welt der Mathematik zu erschließen - ein geistreicher Überblick, eine für jeden verständliche Einführung.

Mathematik


Author: Timothy Gowers
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9783150187067
Category:
Page: 207
View: 5005

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The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Michael Hoskin
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191577731
Category: Science
Page: 136
View: 337

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Astronomy, perhaps the first of the sciences, was already well developed by the time of Christ. Seventeen centuries later, after Newton showed that the movements of the planets could be explained in terms of gravitation, it became the paradigm for the mathematical sciences. In the nineteenth century the analysis of star-light allowed astrophysicists to determine both the chemical composition and the radial velocities of celestial bodies, while the development of photography enabled distant objects invisible to the human eye, to be studied and measured in comfort. Technical developments during and since the Second World War have greatly enlarged the scope of the science by permitting the study of radiation. This is a fascinating introduction to the history of Western astronomy, from prehistoric times to the origins of astrophysics in the mid-nineteenth century. Historical records are first found in Babylon and Egypt, and after two millennia the arithmetical astronomy of the Babylonians merged with the Greek geometrical approach to culminate in the Almagest of Ptolemy. This legacy was transmitted to the Latin West via Islam, and led to Copernicus's claim that the Earth is in motion. In justifying this Kepler converted astronomy into a branch of dynamics, leading to Newton's universal law of gravity. The book concludes with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century applications of Newton's law, and the first explorations of the universe of stars. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Combinatorics

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Robin Wilson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198723490
Category: Mathematics
Page: 144
View: 9353

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How many possible sudoku puzzles are there? In the lottery, what is the chance that two winning balls have consecutive numbers? Who invented Pascal's triangle? (it was not Pascal) Combinatorics, the branch of mathematics concerned with selecting, arranging, and listing or counting collections of objects, works to answer all these questions. Dating back some 3000 years, and initially consisting mainly of the study of permutations and combinations, its scope has broadened to include topics such as graph theory, partitions of numbers, block designs, design of codes, and latin squares. In this Very Short Introduction Robin Wilson gives an overview of the field and its applications in mathematics and computer theory, considering problems from the shortest routes covering certain stops to the minimum number of colours needed to colour a map with different colours for neighbouring countries. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Infinity: a Very Short Introduction


Author: Ian Stewart
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198755236
Category: Mathematics
Page: 144
View: 508

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Infinity is an intriguing topic, with connections to religion, philosophy, metaphysics, logic, and physics as well as mathematics. Its history goes back to ancient times, with especially important contributions from Euclid, Aristotle, Eudoxus, and Archimedes. The infinitely large (infinite) isintimately related to the infinitely small (infinitesimal). Cosmologists consider sweeping questions about whether space and time are infinite. Philosophers and mathematicians ranging from Zeno to Russell have posed numerous paradoxes about infinity and infinitesimals. Many vital areas ofmathematics rest upon some version of infinity. The most obvious, and the first context in which major new techniques depended on formulating infinite processes, is calculus. But there are many others, for example Fourier analysis and fractals.In this Very Short Introduction, Ian Stewart discusses infinity in mathematics while also drawing in the various other aspects of infinity and explaining some of the major problems and insights arising from this concept. He argues that working with infinity is not just an abstract, intellectualexercise but that it is instead a concept with important practical everyday applications, and considers how mathematicians use infinity and infinitesimals to answer questions or supply techniques that do not appear to involve the infinite.ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, andenthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Newton

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Rob Iliffe
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199298033
Category: History
Page: 141
View: 7693

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Newton's contributions to an understanding of the heavens and the earth are considered to be unparalleled. This very short introduction explains his scientific theories, and uses Newton's unpublished writings to paint a picture of an extremely complex man whose beliefs had a huge impact on Europe's political, intellectual, and religious landscape.

Symmetry: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Ian Stewart
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0199651981
Category: Mathematics
Page: 160
View: 5692

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Symmetry is an immensely important concept in mathematics and throughout the sciences. In this Very Short Introduction, Ian Stewart highlights the deep implications of symmetry and its important scientific applications across the entire subject.

Measurement


Author: David J. Hand
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198779569
Category: Mathematics
Page: 144
View: 1876

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Measurement is a fundamental concept that underpins almost every aspect of the modern world. It is central to the sciences, social sciences, medicine, and economics, but it affects everyday life. We measure everything - from the distance of far-off galaxies to the temperature of the air, levels of risk, political majorities, taxes, blood pressure, IQ, and weight. The history of measurement goes back to the ancient world, and its story has been one of gradual standardization. Today there are different types of measurement, levels of accuracy, and systems of units, applied in different contexts. Measurement involves notions of variability, accuracy, reliability, and error, and challenges such as the measurement of extreme values. In this Very Short Introduction, David Hand explains the common mathematical framework underlying all measurement, the main approaches to measurement, and the challenges involved. Following a brief historical account of measurement, he discusses measurement as used in the physical sciences and engineering, the life sciences and medicine, the social and behavioural sciences, economics, business, and public policy. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Erfahrung Mathematik


Author: P.J. Davis,R. Hersh
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
ISBN: 3034850409
Category: Science
Page: 466
View: 1122

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ie ältesten uns bekannten mathematischen Schriftta D feln stammen aus der Zeit um 2400 v. ehr. ; aber wir dürfen davon ausgehen, daß das Bedürfnis, Mathematik zu schaffen, ein Ausdruck der menschlichen Zivilisation an sich ist. In vier bis fünf Jahrtausenden hat sich ein gewalti ges System von Praktiken und Begriffen - die Mathematik herangebildet, die in vielfältiger Weise mit unserem Alltag verknüpft ist. Was ist Mathematik? Was bedeutet sie? Wo mit befaßt sie sich? Was sind ihre Methoden? Wie wird sie geschaffen und benützt? Wo ist ihr Platz in der Vielgestalt der menschlichen Erfahrung? Welchen Nutzen bringt sie? Was für Schaden richtet sie an? Welches Gewicht kommt ihr zu? Diese schwierigen Fragen werden noch zusätzlich kompliziert durch die Fülle des Materials und die weitver zweigten Querverbindungen, die es dem einzelnen verun möglichen, alles zu begreifen, geschweige denn, es in seiner Gesamtheit zu erfassen und zwischen den Deckeln eines normalen Buches unterzubringen. Um von dieser Material fülle nicht erdrückt zu werden, haben sich die Autoren für eine andere Betrachtungsweise entschieden. Die Mathema tik ist seit Tausenden von Jahren ein Feld menschlicher Ak tivität. In begrenztem Rahmen ist jeder von uns ein Mathe matiker und betreibt bewußt Mathematik, wenn er zum Beispiel auf dem Markt einkauft, Tapeten ausmißt oder ei nen Keramiktopf mit einem regelmäßigen Muster verziert. In bescheidenem Ausmaß versucht sich auch jeder von uns als mathematischer Denker. Schon mit dem Ausruf «Aber Zahlen lügen nicht!» befinden wir uns in der Gesellschaft von Plato oder Lakatos.

Applied Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Alain Goriely
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019106887X
Category: Mathematics
Page: 144
View: 4418

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Mathematics is playing an increasing important role in society and the sciences, enhancing our ability to use models and handle data. While pure mathematics is mostly interested in abstract structures, applied mathematics sits at the interface between this abstract world and the world in which we live. This area of mathematics takes its nourishment from society and science and, in turn, provides a unified way to understand problems arising in diverse fields. This Very Short Introduction presents a compact yet comprehensive view of the field of applied mathematics, and explores its relationships with (pure) mathematics, science, and engineering. Explaining the nature of applied mathematics, Alain Goriely discusses its early achievements in physics and engineering, and its development as a separate field after World War II. Using historical examples, current applications, and challenges, Goriely illustrates the particular role that mathematics plays in the modern sciences today and its far-reaching potential. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Fractals: A Very Short Introduction


Author: K. J. Falconer
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199675988
Category: Mathematics
Page: 132
View: 6560

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An essential discussion of the popular science and mathematics behind fractals reveals how fractal shapes can be found everywhere in nature from clouds to coastlines, explaining how basic concepts in fractal geometry produced a revolution in mathematical understandings of patterns in the 20th century. Original.

The Ancient Near East: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Amanda H. Podany
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0195377990
Category: History
Page: 148
View: 5874

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The ancient Near East is defined, for the purposes of this book, as the cuneiform lands," the regions of the ancient world where the cuneiform script, written on clay tablets, was used as the most common medium for written communication. These lands comprise Mesopotamia (with its variously named regions: Sumer, Akkad, Babylonia, and Assyria); Syria, Elam (later known as Persia), and Anatolia. The three thousand years to be covered by this book - from around 3500 BCE, with the founding ofthe first Mesopotamian cities (which coincide with the invention of writing) to the conquest of the Near East by the Persian king Cyrus the Great in 539 BCE - encompass an era of remarkable innovation and achievement. Many of the creations of the people of the ancient Near East are still with us, from fundamental inventions such as the wheel and the plow to intellectual feats such as the inventions of astronomy, law, and diplomacy. The region is known as the "cradle of civilization" for good reason. Here, men and women first tried to live peacefully together in densely urban cities, and found ways, through law and custom, to thrive and prosper. The popular image of history as a story of progress from primitive barbarism to modern sophistication is completely belied by the study of the ancient Near East. For example, women had many rights and freedoms; they could own property, run businesses, and represent themselves in court. Diplomats traveled between the capital cities of major powers ensuring peace and friendship between the kings. Scribes and scholars studied the stars and could predict eclipses and the movements of the planets. These achievements were lost in subsequent centuries, only to be reborn in more modern times. Perhaps the most obvious legacy from the ancient Near East is seen in some of our units of measurement. The Mesopotamians invented a mathematical system based on the number 60, and all the 60-based units in our modern world (including seconds, minutes, and degrees) have come down, unaltered, directly from Mesopotamia. Taking a chronological view, the book will include what we know, ideas about what we don't yet know (but perhaps will in the future), evidence used for discerning the history of the region, and approaches taken to the evidence by scholars of the ancient Near East. Each chapter will focus on one or two archaeological sites that have contributed extensive evidence (both textual and archaeological) to our understanding of an era and expanding from that evidence to a broader view of the era as a whole."

Statistics: A Very Short Introduction


Author: David J. Hand
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191578924
Category: Mathematics
Page: 136
View: 1186

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Modern statistics is very different from the dry and dusty discipline of the popular imagination. In its place is an exciting subject which uses deep theory and powerful software tools to shed light and enable understanding. And it sheds this light on all aspects of our lives, enabling astronomers to explore the origins of the universe, archaeologists to investigate ancient civilisations, governments to understand how to benefit and improve society, and businesses to learn how best to provide goods and services. Aimed at readers with no prior mathematical knowledge, this Very Short Introduction explores and explains how statistics work, and how we can decipher them. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Chaos

A Very Short Introduction
Author: Leonard Smith
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0192853783
Category: Mathematics
Page: 180
View: 9983

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An introduction to chaotic behavior dynamics describes its behavior in both science and the real world.

Aristotle: A Very Short Introduction


Author: Jonathan Barnes
Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks
ISBN: 9780192854087
Category: Philosophy
Page: 160
View: 7522

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The influence of Aristotle, the prince of philosophers, on the intellectual history of the West is second to none. In this book Jonathan Barnes examines Aristotle's scientific researches, his discoveries in logic and his metaphysical theories, his work in psychology and in ethics and politics, and his ideas about art and poetry, placing his teachings in their historical context. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The History of Childhood: A Very Short Introduction


Author: James Marten
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019068139X
Category: History
Page: 160
View: 7416

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While children are a relatively unchanging fact of life, childhood is a constantly shifting concept. Throughout the millennia, the age at which a child becomes a youth and a youth becomes an adult has varied by gender, class, religion, ethnicity, place, and economic need. As author James Marten explores in this Very Short Introduction, so too have the realities of childhood, each life shaped by factors such as education, expectation, and conflict (or lack thereof). Indeed, ancient Roman children lived very differently than those born of today's Generation Z. Experiences of childhood have been shaped in classrooms and on factory floors, in family homes and orphanages, and on battlefields and in front of television sets. In addressing this diversity, The History of Childhood: A Very Short Introduction takes a global, expansive view of the features of childhood that have shaped childhood throughout history and continue to shape it now. From the rules of Confucian childrearing in twelfth-century China to the struggles of children living as slaves in the Americas or as cotton mill workers in Industrial Age Britain, Marten takes his inspiration from the idea that the lives of children reveal important and sometimes uncomfortable truths about civilization. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.