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The Mathematical Tourist: Snapshots of Modern Mathematics
The Mathematical Tourist Snapshots of Modern Mathematics Author:Ivars Peterson For most of us, the world of mathematics is a foreign land, and its road signs are a bewildering code of obscure formulas and numbing equations. But when math popularizer Ivars Peterson takes us on a guided tour in this new edition of The Mathematical Tourist, the mumbo jumbo becomes meaningful, and we discover the fascinating concepts that brin... more »g a new vibrancy and clarity to the landscape of modern mathematics.
In this revised, updated edition of Peterson's classic work, the author blazes a trail into math's wilderness, a domain of unsettled truths full of unanswered questions, and shows us the wonderland beyond the thicket. He presents the latest information on mathematical proofs, fractals, prime numbers, and chaos, as well as new material on such intriguing topics as the relationship between mathematical knots and DNA; the application of cellular automata models to social questions; and the significant increase in the speed of factoring large composite numbers by means of computers based on quantum logic.
Demystifying the major discoveries in mathematics, Peterson explores the work of key mathematicians along with the sources of their ideas and inspiration. He also shows how their discoveries fit into the mathematical puzzle and have spawned further developments. More than 100 lively line drawings and sixteen color plates of computer-generated images graphically illuminate the concepts?revealing that cutting-edge math can also be art.
Whether a math lover or mathematically challenged, you're sure to delight in gaining a better grasp of the dynamic notions that push the envelope of math's frontier.
Explore the fascinating world of modern mathematics with Ivars Peterson in The Mathematical Tourist. On the way, get the scoop on these and a hundred other intriguing questions:
*How did a cryptic message containing the words squeamish ossifrage lead to important developments in quantum theory and computer science?
*What do soap bubbles have to do with calculating the most efficient trajectory of a spacecraft?
*How does an ant on a doughnut demonstrate one of mathematics' most challenging and baffling unsolved problems?
Ivars Peterson is the heir-apparent to Martin Gardner as the philosopher king of mathematics for the public.« less