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Hide preview Click here to look inside this book with Google Preview. Introductory Mathematics. I Used to Know That: Maths by Chris Waring Brush up on your mental arithmetic, including percentages, averages and recurring decimals or work on your trigonometry skills, from Pythagoras' Theorum to triangle areas and Mathematics - General. I Used to Know That: Maths by Chris Waring If memories of learning algebra bring you out in a cold sweat and thoughts of quadratic equations cause you feelings of fear and dread, I Adam Spencer's Numberland by Adam Spencer Yottabytes, massive diamonds, the s version of Fortnight - not to mention more pizza!
Hofstadter Douglas Hofstadter's book is concerned directly with the nature of maps" or links between formal systems.
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From 0 to Infinity in 26 Centuries: The Extraordinary Story of Maths
Contact 08 info boffinsbooks. ISBN Do you want to know why the Ancient Greeks knew so much maths? Or, why there was so little maths studied in the Dark Ages?
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Read this fascinating book to uncover the mysteries of maths…. Chris Waring was born in London. After a degree in Mechanical Engineering at Imperial College London and a short yet disastrous career as a headhunter, he became a maths teacher. Since then he has taught small children and Oxbridge candidates and everybody in between.
He lives in York. Buy the book. He breezes through both concepts and history with the same easy style and everything is well explained, up to a point. It is when the book reaches this point that it loses some of its effectiveness.
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There are several concepts explained where the book hints at real world applications, but not much detail is given. In the simpler areas of Maths, this is not a problem as many of the developments were due to Maths being used to solve a real world problem.
But in the case of some of the more abstract processes, a little more explanation could have been useful. It may be that this is outside the scope of the history of Maths, but there were several points it would have been helpful. In splitting the ages into areas rather than remaining strictly chronological in approach, at parts the book can be a touch confusing. Some developments followed naturally on from others, but if they were happening on different continents, as in a couple of cases, sometimes the next event in a chain is in a different section from the last.
Although Waring always refers back, it did occasionally interrupt the moment to have to go back and remind myself of the previous development. Mostly, however, the through line was enough to keep me going. In addition, if the reader's understanding is above a basic level, some parts can seem a little too simplistic. Admittedly, much of the history is still fascinating and there was much here that was new to me, particularly about the people involved in creating some of the Maths that stumped me all those years ago. But some of the explanations seemed a little basic and lacking in something for someone with a little more interest and knowledge.
If you're the kind of person for whom something like this would pique your interest and you want to know more, you'll have to go elsewhere to do so. However, as a starter book into the history of Maths, this is a very well done book indeed. It touches enough on each notable person or concept to give an idea of what they or it did and then moves on. This allows for a very compact book that doesn't get bogged down by too much complicated details that would cause a reader with a relatively basic understanding to get confused or disinterested.
It won't necessarily make Maths any easier, but it could make it a little more interesting for the reluctant or unenthusiastic student of the subject. This review may also appear, in whole or in part, under my name at any or all of www. Oct 07, Sid Nuncius rated it liked it. I generally enjoy books of this kind very much and this one does have its merits, but I'm afraid I thought it had some serious flaws, too. It is presented in a series of brief sections, most of which give an outline of the contribution of an individual to mathematics, from ancient Greek, Chinese, Indian and Arabic mathematicians via people like Descartes, Newton, Euler and so on up to the 20th century where both concepts and people become less familiar.
These are generally well written, the conce I generally enjoy books of this kind very much and this one does have its merits, but I'm afraid I thought it had some serious flaws, too. These are generally well written, the concepts on the whole are well explained and the tone is amiable and welcoming with not too much in the way of scary equations, which is excellent for the non-specialist.
- From 0 To Infinity In 26 Centuries The Extraordinary Story Of Maths.
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However, as a story of maths which it claims to be I found it rather lacking because there is no sense anywhere of how the ideas described fit together, and although it is roughly chronological it seemed just a random scattering of stories without any sense of movement through history. And while Chris Waring mentions applications of some of the concepts and techniques, I didn't really get a sense of how it all fitted into the world.
More seriously, some of the explanations are badly flawed. For example, I thought I was losing my mathematical marbles on page 54 because Euclid's Theorem of Infinite Primes is so poorly and inaccurately explained that it seems to be self-evidently false. Waring says "If you multiply all the primes together you generate a number. This next number And so on. There are inaccuracies scattered throughout, which in a book about anything other than mathematics probably wouldn't matter but here are significant. For example, "24 is not a weird number because we can add its factors 2,4,6 and 12 together to make I'm afraid that there was a good deal of this sort of sloppiness and I found it increasingly irritating because, unlike in fiction, say, small errors in mathematics render it plain wrong, and precision is vital even in a book like this for the general reader.
I am sorry to be critical. Chris Waring deserves credit for attempting to write an accessible book on the history of maths and this isn't terrible by any means, but it is flawed and I can only recommend it with some rather serious reservations. Oct 05, Arjun BK rated it really liked it Shelves: favorites. I finished the book in a day, which tells you how you cannot put this one down for a moment. The passion of the author for math is very true. He exemplifies it with scientific scenarios and facts that came mostly new to me.
To know how numbers grew from sticks to codes, this is exactly what you need to read. Jan 07, Christina Hurley rated it liked it Shelves: This is a fun light read for anyone who likes or is intrigued by numbers, calculations, and alike. Readers should set appropriate expectations. The book is less than pages and covers quite a few centuries so nothing is terribly in depth, but there were enough times I paused and said "I did not know that". May 05, Ari Candra Arista rated it really liked it. Sep 13, William Boyle rated it it was amazing.
An easy book to read, one that tells you clearly about things you have heard about. Dec 11, Diocletian rated it really liked it.