Prime Obsession

Prime Obsession


By (author) John Derbyshire

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  • Publisher: PLUME
  • Format: Paperback | 448 pages
  • Dimensions: 132mm x 200mm x 26mm | 381g
  • Publication date: 1 June 2004
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 0452285259
  • ISBN 13: 9780452285255
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 53,587

Product description

In 1859, Bernhard Riemann, a little-known thirty-two year old mathematician, made a hypothesis while presenting a paper to the Berlin Academy titled On the Number of Prime Numbers Less Than a Given Quantity. Today, after 150 years of careful research and exhaustive study, the Riemann Hyphothesis remains unsolved, with a one-million-dollar prize earmarked for the first person to conquer it.Alternating passages of extraordinarily lucid mathematical exposition with chapters of elegantly composed biography and history, Prime Obsession is a fascinating and fluent account of an epic mathematical mystery that continues to challenge and excite the world."

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Author information

John Derbyshire is a mathematician and linguist by education, a systems analyst by profession, and a celebrated writer in his spare time. His work appears frequently in National Review and The New Criterion. Born and raised in England, he has made his home in the United States for the past fifteen years.

Review quote

"Derbyshire's attempt to take nonmathematicians into this subject had me on the edge of my seat." --Los Angeles Times"Riemann and his colleagues come to life as real characters and not just adjectives for conjectures and theorems." --Scientific American

Table of contents

Prologue Part I: The Prime Number Theorem Chapter 1: Card Trick Chapter 2: The Soil, the Crop Chapter 3: The Prime Number Theorem Chapter 4: On the Shoulders of Giants Chapter 5: Riemann's Zeta Function Chapter 6: The Great Fusion Chapter 7: The Golden Key, and an Improved Prime Number Theorem Chapter 8: Not Altogether Unworthy Chapter 9: Domain Stretching Chapter 10: A Proof and a Turning Point Part II: The Riemann Hypothesis Chapter 11: Nine Zulu Queens Ruled China Chapter 12: Hilbert's Eighth Problem Chapter 13: The Argument Ant and the Value Ant Chapter 14: In the Grip of an Obsession Chapter 15: Big Oh and M