How the World Became Obsessed with Time
‘Technology is making everything faster, and because we know that things will become faster in the future, it follows that nothing is fast enough now.’ Surveying how, over the last 250 years, time has come to dominate our lives, Simon Garfield considers its practical applications rather than theoretical physics: the subjects of his ‘illuminating stories’ include – definitely not in chronological order – football, Beethoven’s Ninth, railway timetables, Roger Bannister, Swiss watchmakers, The Clock (Christian Marclay’s film) and the British Museum.
It All Adds Up
The Story of People and Mathematics
Just as non-musicians can love music, believes Launay, anyone can understand and marvel at the numbers and geometry that surround us every day. So in this book he guides the reader on a journey through the history of mathematics, revealing how curiosity and serendipity have led to new discoveries, from ancient Mesopotamian frieze designs and the earliest written number symbols to the Mandelbrot set, which can be drawn only with the help of computers.
An Expedition to the Outer Limits of Mathematics
Beginning by attempting to explain what infinity is – and why it is ‘easy to think about but hard to pin down’ – this approachable guide uses carefully chosen analogies and classic thought experiments such as Hilbert's Hotel to help illuminate complex ideas. Eugenia Cheng presents mathematics as an exciting journey of discovery, and uses practical examples to help us understand the abstract concept of infinity in the context of our daily lives.
A Curious History
Euclid, Fibonacci, Fermat and Gauss are some of the distinguished mathematicians featured in this illustrated introduction to the history of mathematics, which ranges from prehistoric arithmetic through Renaissance accountancy to modern-day chaos theory. Key concepts, including geometry, algebra, trigonometry and calculus are discussed in non-technical, accessible language, with minimal use of symbols, jargon or complex techniques.
The Humongous Book of Geometry Problems
The best way to learn about geometry is to work through lots of problems and proofs – but it can be frustrating when a textbook just gives you the answer without explaining clearly how to reach it. This collection of 1,000 problems is fully annotated with tips and step-by-step solutions to guide you through basic rules and concepts, from parallel and intersecting lines to vectors, transformations and truth tables, by way of the key theorems for circles and triangles.
How it Shaped Our World
In this companion guide to the Science Museum’s Winton Gallery, curator David Rooney considers the everyday practical applications of mathematics, both past and present, including mathematics in design, economics, geography, medicine, travel and war. This generously illustrated volume features many of the objects and diagrams from the gallery’s collection, among them Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine and Le Corbusier’s Le Modulor infographic, while four essays by prominent academics include two on women’s place in the history of mathematics.
How Do You Get an Egg into a Bottle?
Bizarre, Weird and Wonderful Puzzles with Science
The egg problem is one of the 60 weird and wonderful science puzzles in this set of question and answer cards. You can challenge yourself or friends to work out why boomerangs come back or how to drive on ice: the solution of each problem is explained on the reverse of the card.
At the Edge of Infinity and Beyond
Aleph-null is the cardinality, or size, of the set of natural numbers, and is a ‘countably infinite cardinal’. Remarkably, whereas 1 + 1 = 2, 1 + aleph-null = aleph-null. The authors of this advanced maths explainer utilize plain English in an attempt to understand difficult mathematical concepts, including large numbers, higher dimensions, computation and primes, fusing historical, philosophical and anecdotal aspects of each concept with the decidedly technical. Slightly off-mint.
Maths in Bite-sized Chunks
Chris Waring’s accessible guide is designed for anyone who is keen to overcome a fear of mathematics. Employing numerous examples, common-sense explanations, fascinating asides and clear diagrams, this volume breaks down seemingly inscrutable mathematical concepts into easy-to-follow steps, explaining simple arithmetic and number, ratio and proportion, algebra, geometry, statistics and probability. Reassuringly, Waring emphasises real-world applications of mathematical principles, championing the great mathematicians of history in the process.
Entropy of Hidden Markov Processes and Connections to Dynamical Systems
Papers from the Banff International Research Station Workshop
The mathematics of hidden Markov processes (HMPs) can be applied to many kinds of noise-related technologies, from speech and optical character recognition to biomolecular sequence analysis. This collection of nine papers from a 2007 workshop at the Banff International Research Station covers the entropy rate problem, or measure of randomness, of HMPs, with reference to informational theory, dynamical systems, statistical mechanics and probability theory.
The Quality of Numbers One to Thirty-one
In these essays – one for each day of the month – Held demonstrates the fascinating qualities and associations, both cultural and scientific, of the first 31 integers. His ‘excursions into the realm of number’ visit such varied calling-points as the eleven-year sunspot cycle, humans’ 23 pairs of chromosomes, Snow White’s seven dwarves and Judas’ 30 pieces of silver.
Number Treasury 3
Investigations, Facts and Conjectures About More than 100 Number Families
Written as a resource for both teachers and students, this enlarged third edition of Number Treasury is designed to guide readers through the steps that will help them to think critically, to provide explanations and to formulate conjectures about different families of positive integers. Its 137 exercises and 28 'investigations', at three levels of difficulty, cover such intriguing topics as magic squares, palindromic numbers and twin primes. Detailed solutions are provided at the back of the book.
How Smart Are You?
Test Your Math IQ
How to improve your number skills: these 50 ten-question quizzes have an IQ-style scoring system that enables you to compare your performance with the average mark. The tests cover decimals and fractions, interest and percentages, means and medians and pose a range of algebraic word problems, interspersed with brief biographies of great mathematicians from Pythagoras to Andrew Wiles, who solved Fermat’s Last Theorem in 1994. American spelling and elastic closure.
Suitable both for students beginning their study of algebra and for those who want to recollect what they once knew, these nine chapters progress from basic principles of addition and subtraction to the solution of quadratic equations. Everything is presented as painlessly as possible, with step-by-step guides to solving each kind of problem, advice on common mistakes to avoid and illustrative drawings and diagrams.
Abbo of Fleury and Ramsey
Commentary on the Calculus of Victorius of Aquitaine
This didactic work by Abbo of Fleury (c.945–1004) is a philosophical Commentary on the mathematical tables produced by Victorius of Aquitaine (fl.457) to facilitate calculations using Roman numerals and fractions. Latin texts of both Victorius and Abbo. No jacket.
The Story of Mathematics
From Creating the Pyramids to Exploring Infinity
In this very accessible and well-illustrated book, Anne Rooney traces humankind's greatest mathematical achievements, starting with innumerate cave-dwellers, then profiling the great mathematicians from Euclid to Bertrand Russell and David Hilbert, and explaining key developments such as solid geometry, calculus and statistical mathematics, up to 'the death of numbers' with set theory and fuzzy logic.
How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems... and Create More
Our world is increasingly ruled by algorithms, the complex sets of step-by-step instructions that enable computers to sort, filter and select information. But is this always a positive development, and how did we come to believe in the all-conquering power of numbers? Combining journalism and scholarship, Dormehl investigates the role of algorithms in our modern lives and shows how these formulas are shaping human relationships and creativity, notions of identity and even matters of law.
The Marvellous Maths Workbook
If you recognize the value of maths but have never quite got to grips with some of the detail, Go Figure could be your formula for success. This guide to mastering the basics includes simple explanations and 100 short quizzes covering the six main areas of maths: arithmetic, fractions and probability, statistics, algebra, geometry and problem solving. All the answers are provided at the back of the book. Slightly off-mint.
The Telomerase Revolution
The Enzyme That Holds the Key to Human Aging... and Will Soon Lead to Longer, Healthier Lives
Why does growing old lead to so many forms of illness? Recent advances in the study of human cells have revealed that the key to answering this question lies in the telomeres – the tips of chromosomes – which shorten every time a cell reproduces. As he explains these insights, Fossel highlights the ability of the enzyme telomerase to re-lengthen the telomeres and discusses its potential as a means of treating age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
The Birth of Modern Science in Medieval Europe
Histories of Western science often begin their narrative with Galileo’s battle to gain acceptance for Copernicus’ heliocentric model. But physicist John Freely sets out ‘to right this historical injustice’ by showing how a succession of European scholars as far back as the Dark Ages paved the way for the exciting discoveries of later centuries. Discussing the influential work of such figures as the Venerable Bede and Albertus Magnus, he identifies those ‘giants’ on whose shoulders Newton said he was standing.
Build Your Own Time Machine
The Real Science of Time Travel
Although HG Wells’s Victorian time machine would not have worked, there is no law of physics that prevents travel through the fourth dimension. Brian Clegg combines his enthusiasm for science fiction with his insights as a writer on real science to explore ways in which time travel could theoretically be achieved. He also traces the development of our modern understanding of time, from Einstein’s first daydreams about the speed of light to neutrino experiments and the latest theories about wormholes.
The Birth of the Pill
How Four Pioneers Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution
In the winter of 1950, 71-year-old Margaret Sanger met the scientist Gregory Pincus in New York City. Their meeting would change the world. This gripping account tells how Pincus and Sanger, a lifelong campaigner for women’s right to control their fertility, developed the contraceptive pill, funded by the philanthropist Katharine McCormick and supported by a charismatic Catholic doctor, John Rock, who battled his own church to win public approval for the controversial new drug.
The Origin of (Almost) Everything
In six parts, on the universe, Earth, life, civilization, knowledge and inventions, this book is a compilation of modern origin stories, giving science’s answers and explanations to questions such as "What is matter made of?" "How did eyes evolve?" and "Why do we need so much stuff?" The book is an engaging introduction to a vast range of topics – from the QWERTY keyboard to black holes – introduced by Stephen Hawking and his big question: ‘Existence: Where did we come from?’
The Weather Experiment
The Pioneers Who Sought to See the Future
Modern weather forecasts owe their existence to the eclectic group of 19th-century mavericks who created meteorological science; they included such figures as Sir Francis Beaufort, who quantified winds, the pharmacist Luke Howard, who classified clouds, and Admiral Robert FitzRoy, who issued Britain’s first storm warning in 1861. This book describes how they developed their radical theories, devised new instruments and attempted to convince governments of the moral duty to give the public advance warning of storms.
The Universe in Your Hand
A Journey Through Space, Time and Beyond
As he sets off to conduct a journey through the universe, the astrophysicist Christophe Galfard aims to ‘not leave any readers behind’ and promises to use only one equation (E=mc²). In a widely acclaimed, non-scientists’ introduction to modern physics and cosmology, Galfard uses humour, storytelling and thought experiments to make concepts such as electromagnetism, quantum mechanics, general relativity and black holes intelligible to all of us.
Rubik's Quest: Cube Countdown
The Rubik’s-cube core of the world’s most important computer has been stolen, and it’s the reader’s mission to recover it. Rather than reading from front to back, young adventurers must use their knowledge of shape, geometry and patterns – as well as their common sense – to solve the puzzles and plot their own unique path through the story. Age 7+
As Easy as Pi
Stuff about Numbers that isn't (just) Maths
Numbers are all-pervasive in our world; Pythagoras even said they rule the universe. This guide to the numbers of everyday life explains how they influence our religion, myth, fiction and linguistic idioms, why some numbers are considered lucky or unlucky, how they are exploited in games and scams, and their vital role in the realms of mathematics and science.
The Mice Who Sing For Sex
And Other Weird Tales From the World of Science
This humorous scientific miscellany is curated by the presenters of the podcast Geek Chic’s Weird Science and imparts the rationale behind all manner of inventions and phenomena, including solar-powered flight, self-lacing shoes, super-memory and addiction to healthy food (which can replace an addiction to fat and sugar). With frequent ‘chic fact’ boxes and cartoons, it also delves into outer space, wildlife and sex: are sound waves the new Viagra?
Dataclysm: Who We Are*
*When We Think No One's Looking
OkCupid founder Christian Rudder mines the big data of social media to reveal how age, beauty, gender, race and numerous other ‘tick-box’ signifiers influence our decision-making during the myriad of interactions that shape our lives online and beyond.