Fermat's Last Theorem

Unlocking the Secret of an Ancient Mathematical Problem

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Basic Books (AZ)

ISBN: 9781568583600

Category: Mathematics

Page: 147

View: 690

Simple, elegant, and utterly impossible to prove, Fermat's last theorem captured the imaginations of mathematicians for more than three centuries. For some, it became a wonderful passion. For others it was an obsession that led to deceit, intrigue, or insanity. In a volume filled with the clues, red herrings, and suspense of a mystery novel, Amir D. Aczel reveals the previously untold story of the people, the history, and the cultures that lie behind this scientific triumph. From formulas devised from the farmers of ancient Babylonia to the dramatic proof of Fermat's theorem in 1993, this extraordinary work takes us along on an exhilarating intellectual treasure hunt. Revealing the hidden mathematical order of the natural world in everything from stars to sunflowers, Fermat's Last Theorem brilliantly combines philosophy and hard science with investigative journalism. The result: a real-life detective story of the intellect, at once intriguing, thought-provoking, and impossible to put down.

The Artist and the Mathematician

The Story of Nicolas Bourbaki, the Genius Mathematician who Never Existed

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 9781560259312

Category: Mathematics

Page: 239

View: 6775

Traces the intellectual prank through which the character of a fictional 1930s genius mathematician was devised and promoted throughout the American education system, describing how he was credited with originating the modern mathematical proof and the emergence of "new math."

Fermat’s Last Theorem

Author: Simon Singh

Publisher: HarperCollins UK

ISBN: 0007381999

Category: Science

Page: 368

View: 4730

‘I have a truly marvellous demonstration of this proposition which this margin is too narrow to contain.’

Descartes' Secret Notebook

A True Tale of Mathematics, Mysticism, and the Quest to Understand the Universe

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Broadway

ISBN: 0767920341

Category: Mathematics

Page: 273

View: 2341

A portrait of the seventeenth-century philosopher and mathematician looks at his interest in mysticism and probable membership in the occult brotherhood of Rosicrucians, and his secret notebook, which he kept in code, attempting to redecipher the contents of the long-lost volume.


A Guide to Gambling, Love, the Stock Market & Just about Everything Else

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 9781560257943

Category: Mathematics

Page: 161

View: 4994

In a followup to his Fermat's Last Theorem, the author shows readers how to maximize or minimize chance, depending on the circumstance, analyzing luck from a statistitian's perspective.

The Last Theorem

Author: Arthur C. Clarke,Frederik Pohl

Publisher: HarperCollins UK

ISBN: 0007308140

Category: Fiction

Page: 336

View: 1207

The final work from the brightest star in science fiction’s galaxy. Arthur C Clarke, who predicted the advent of communication satellites and author of 2001: A Space Odyssey completes a lifetime career in science fiction with a masterwork.

Finding Zero

A Mathematician's Odyssey to Uncover the Origins of Numbers

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1466879106

Category: Mathematics

Page: 256

View: 9464

The invention of numerals is perhaps the greatest abstraction the human mind has ever created. Virtually everything in our lives is digital, numerical, or quantified. The story of how and where we got these numerals, which we so depend on, has for thousands of years been shrouded in mystery. Finding Zero is an adventure filled saga of Amir Aczel's lifelong obsession: to find the original sources of our numerals. Aczel has doggedly crisscrossed the ancient world, scouring dusty, moldy texts, cross examining so-called scholars who offered wildly differing sets of facts, and ultimately penetrating deep into a Cambodian jungle to find a definitive proof. Here, he takes the reader along for the ride. The history begins with the early Babylonian cuneiform numbers, followed by the later Greek and Roman letter numerals. Then Aczel asks the key question: where do the numbers we use today, the so-called Hindu-Arabic numerals, come from? It is this search that leads him to explore uncharted territory, to go on a grand quest into India, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and ultimately into the wilds of Cambodia. There he is blown away to find the earliest zero—the keystone of our entire system of numbers—on a crumbling, vine-covered wall of a seventh-century temple adorned with eaten-away erotic sculptures. While on this odyssey, Aczel meets a host of fascinating characters: academics in search of truth, jungle trekkers looking for adventure, surprisingly honest politicians, shameless smugglers, and treacherous archaeological thieves—who finally reveal where our numbers come from.

The Mystery of the Aleph

Mathematics, the Kabbalah, and the Search for Infinity

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 0743422996

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 272

View: 1953

Journeys into the work of Georg Cantor, a Russian-born German mathematician, who developed set theory and the concept of infinite numbers, but was condemned by his peers and spent many years in an asylum.

Count Down

Six Kids Vie for Glory at the World's Toughest Math Competition

Author: Steve Olson

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 9780618562121

Category: Education

Page: 244

View: 7128

Follows six American high school students on the quest for glory in the Olympics of math competitions--The International Mathematical Olympiad.

Science in the Contemporary World

An Encyclopedia

Author: Eric Gottfrid Swedin

Publisher: ABC-CLIO

ISBN: 1851095241

Category: Reference

Page: 382

View: 4101

This work is a unique introductory A–Z resource detailing the scientific achievements of the contemporary world and analyzing the key scientific trends, discoveries, and personalities of the modern age. * Over 200 A–Z entries covering topics ranging from plate tectonics to the first Moon landings * More than 40 stunning photographs providing a unique pictorial chronicle of the achievements of modern science

Wind Wizard

Alan G. Davenport and the Art of Wind Engineering

Author: Siobhan Roberts

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 1400844703

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 288

View: 3545

With Wind Wizard, Siobhan Roberts brings us the story of Alan Davenport (1932-2009), the father of modern wind engineering, who investigated how wind navigates the obstacle course of the earth's natural and built environments--and how, when not properly heeded, wind causes buildings and bridges to teeter unduly, sway with abandon, and even collapse. In 1964, Davenport received a confidential telephone call from two engineers requesting tests on a pair of towers that promised to be the tallest in the world. His resulting wind studies on New York's World Trade Center advanced the art and science of wind engineering with one pioneering innovation after another. Establishing the first dedicated "boundary layer" wind tunnel laboratory for civil engineering structures, Davenport enabled the study of the atmospheric region from the earth's surface to three thousand feet, where the air churns with turbulent eddies, the average wind speed increasing with height. The boundary layer wind tunnel mimics these windy marbled striations in order to test models of buildings and bridges that inevitably face the wind when built. Over the years, Davenport's revolutionary lab investigated and improved the wind-worthiness of the world's greatest structures, including the Sears Tower, the John Hancock Tower, Shanghai's World Financial Center, the CN Tower, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, the Sunshine Skyway, and the proposed crossing for the Strait of Messina, linking Sicily with mainland Italy. Chronicling Davenport's innovations by analyzing select projects, this popular-science book gives an illuminating behind-the-scenes view into the practice of wind engineering, and insight into Davenport's steadfast belief that there is neither a structure too tall nor too long, as long as it is supported by sound wind science. Some images inside the book are unavailable due to digital copyright restrictions.

Uncle Petros and Goldbach's Conjecture

Author: Apostolos Doxiadis

Publisher: Faber & Faber

ISBN: 057129569X

Category: Fiction

Page: 224

View: 1123

Uncle Petros is a family joke. An ageing recluse, he lives alone in a suburb of Athens, playing chess and tending to his garden. If you didn't know better, you'd surely think he was one of life's failures. But his young nephew suspects otherwise. For Uncle Petros, he discovers, was once a celebrated mathematician, brilliant and foolhardy enough to stake everything on solving a problem that had defied all attempts at proof for nearly three centuries - Goldbach's Conjecture. His quest brings him into contact with some of the century's greatest mathematicians, including the Indian prodigy Ramanujan and the young Alan Turing. But his struggle is lonely and single-minded, and by the end it has apparently destroyed his life. Until that is a final encounter with his nephew opens up to Petros, once more, the deep mysterious beauty of mathematics. Uncle Petros and Goldbach's Conjecture is an inspiring novel of intellectual adventure, proud genius, the exhilaration of pure mathematics - and the rivalry and antagonism which torment those who pursue impossible goals.

My Search for Ramanujan

How I Learned to Count

Author: Ken Ono,Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3319255681

Category: Mathematics

Page: 238

View: 9142

"The son of a prominent Japanese mathematician who came to the United States after World War II, Ken Ono was raised on a diet of high expectations and little praise. Rebelling against his pressure-cooker of a life, Ken determined to drop out of high school to follow his own path. To obtain his father’s approval, he invoked the biography of the famous Indian mathematical prodigy Srinivasa Ramanujan, whom his father revered, who had twice flunked out of college because of his single-minded devotion to mathematics. Ono describes his rocky path through college and graduate school, interweaving Ramanujan’s story with his own and telling how at key moments, he was inspired by Ramanujan and guided by mentors who encouraged him to pursue his interest in exploring Ramanujan’s mathematical legacy. Picking up where others left off, beginning with the great English mathematician G.H. Hardy, who brought Ramanujan to Cambridge in 1914, Ono has devoted his mathematical career to understanding how in his short life, Ramanujan was able to discover so many deep mathematical truths, which Ramanujan believed had been sent to him as visions from a Hindu goddess. And it was Ramanujan who was ultimately the source of reconciliation between Ono and his parents. Ono’s search for Ramanujan ranges over three continents and crosses paths with mathematicians whose lives span the globe and the entire twentieth century and beyond. Along the way, Ken made many fascinating discoveries. The most important and surprising one of all was his own humanity."

Excursions in the History of Mathematics

Author: Israel Kleiner

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 0817682686

Category: Mathematics

Page: 347

View: 1552

This book comprises five parts. The first three contain ten historical essays on important topics: number theory, calculus/analysis, and proof, respectively. Part four deals with several historically oriented courses, and Part five provides biographies of five mathematicians who played major roles in the historical events described in the first four parts of the work. Excursions in the History of Mathematics was written with several goals in mind: to arouse mathematics teachers’ interest in the history of their subject; to encourage mathematics teachers with at least some knowledge of the history of mathematics to offer courses with a strong historical component; and to provide an historical perspective on a number of basic topics taught in mathematics courses.

The Mathematical Tourist

New and Updated Snapshots of Modern Mathematics

Author: Ivars Peterson

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 0805071598

Category: Mathematics

Page: 288

View: 5582

A guide to mathematics covers such topics as mathematical proofs, fractals, chaos, prime numbers, four-dimensional geometry, and quasicrystals.

The History of Mathematics

Brief Version

Author: Victor J. Katz

Publisher: Addison-Wesley


Category: Mathematics

Page: 560

View: 2058

One of the leading historians in the mathematics field, Victor Katz provides a world view of mathematics, balancing ancient, early modern, and modern history. Egypt and Mesopotamia, Greek Mathematics to the Time of Euclid, Greek Mathematics from Archimedes to Ptolemy, Diophantus to Hypatia, Ancient and Medieval China, Ancient and Medieval India, The Mathematics of Islam, Mathematics in Medieval Europe, Mathematics in the Renaissance, Precalculus in the Seventeenth Century, Calculus in the Seventeenth Century, Analysis in the Eighteenth Century, Probability and Statistics in the Eighteenth Century, Algebra and Number Theory in the Eighteenth Century, Geometry in the Eighteenth Century, Algebra and Number Theory in the Nineteenth Century, Analysis in the Nineteenth Century, Statistics in the Nineteenth Century, Geometry in the Nineteenth Century, Aspects of the Twentieth Century For all readers interested in the history of mathematics.

The Code Book

How to Make It, Break It, Hack It, Crack it

Author: Simon Singh

Publisher: Ember

ISBN: 0385730624

Category: Juvenile Nonfiction

Page: 263

View: 9545

Provides a review of cryptography, its evolution over time, and its purpose throughout history from the era of Julius Caesar to the modern day.

Elementary Number Theory: Primes, Congruences, and Secrets

A Computational Approach

Author: William Stein

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 0387855254

Category: Mathematics

Page: 168

View: 2967

This is a book about prime numbers, congruences, secret messages, and elliptic curves that you can read cover to cover. It grew out of undergr- uate courses that the author taught at Harvard, UC San Diego, and the University of Washington. The systematic study of number theory was initiated around 300B. C. when Euclid proved that there are in?nitely many prime numbers, and also cleverly deduced the fundamental theorem of arithmetic, which asserts that every positive integer factors uniquely as a product of primes. Over a thousand years later (around 972A. D. ) Arab mathematicians formulated the congruent number problem that asks for a way to decide whether or not a given positive integer n is the area of a right triangle, all three of whose sides are rational numbers. Then another thousand years later (in 1976), Di?e and Hellman introduced the ?rst ever public-key cryptosystem, which enabled two people to communicate secretely over a public communications channel with no predetermined secret; this invention and the ones that followed it revolutionized the world of digital communication. In the 1980s and 1990s, elliptic curves revolutionized number theory, providing striking new insights into the congruent number problem, primality testing, publ- key cryptography, attacks on public-key systems, and playing a central role in Andrew Wiles’ resolution of Fermat’s Last Theorem.

Probability 1

Author: Amir D. Aczel, Ph.D.

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 054434166X

Category: Science

Page: 240

View: 1845

For thousands of years, it was the visionaries and writers who argued that we cannot be alone-that there is intellegent life in the universe. Now, with the discoveries of the Hubble Telescope, data emerging from Mars, and knowledge about life at the extremes, scientists are taking up where they left off. Amir Aczel, author of Fermat's Last Theorem, pulls together everyting science has discovered, and mixes in proabability theory, to argure the case for the existence of intelligent life beyond this planet. Probability 1 is an extraordinary tour de force in which the author draws on cosmology, math, and biology to tell the rollicking good story of scientists tackling important scientific questions that help answer this fundamental question. What is the probability of intelligent life in the universe? Read this book, and you'll be convinced, by the power of the argument and the excitement of the science.

Professor Stewart's Cabinet of Mathematical Curiosities

Author: Ian Stewart

Publisher: Profile Books

ISBN: 1847651283

Category: Mathematics

Page: 320

View: 5960

School maths is not the interesting part. The real fun is elsewhere. Like a magpie, Ian Stewart has collected the most enlightening, entertaining and vexing 'curiosities' of maths over the years... Now, the private collection is displayed in his cabinet. There are some hidden gems of logic, geometry and probability -- like how to extract a cherry from a cocktail glass (harder than you think), a pop up dodecahedron, the real reason why you can't divide anything by zero and some tips for making money by proving the obvious. Scattered among these are keys to unlocking the mysteries of Fermat's last theorem, the Poincar Conjecture, chaos theory, and the P/NP problem for which a million dollar prize is on offer. There are beguiling secrets about familiar names like Pythagoras or prime numbers, as well as anecdotes about great mathematicians. Pull out the drawers of the Professor's cabinet and who knows what could happen...