The Best Writing on Mathematics 2011
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The Best Writing on Mathematics 2011

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Description

This anthology brings together the year's finest mathematics writing from around the world. Featuring promising new voices alongside some of the foremost names in the field, The Best Writing on Mathematics 2011 makes available to a wide audience many articles not easily found anywhere else--and you don't need to be a mathematician to enjoy them. These writings offer surprising insights into the nature, meaning, and practice of mathematics today. They delve into the history, philosophy, teaching, and everyday occurrences of math, and take readers behind the scenes of today's hottest mathematical debates. Here Ian Hacking discusses the salient features that distinguish mathematics from other disciplines of the mind; Doris Schattschneider identifies some of the mathematical inspirations of M. C. Escher's art; Jordan Ellenberg describes compressed sensing, a mathematical field that is reshaping the way people use large sets of data; Erica Klarreich reports on the use of algorithms in the job market for doctors; and much, much more. In addition to presenting the year's most memorable writings on mathematics, this must-have anthology includes a foreword by esteemed physicist and mathematician Freeman Dyson. This book belongs on the shelf of anyone interested in where math has taken us--and where it is headed.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 416 pages
  • 139.7 x 213.36 x 35.56mm | 430.91g
  • Princeton University Press
  • New Jersey, United States
  • English
  • 2011 ed.
  • 68 halftones. 12 line illus.
  • 0691153159
  • 9780691153155
  • 318,271

Review quote

"To my mind, though, there is circumstantial evidence that the contributions in this booklet are pretty close to what the title promises. This volume is the very ticket for any mathematician and--beyond that--for anybody who enjoys a sense of delight in the beauty of writing."--J. Lang, International Mathematical News "The volume is a single-shot source to keep in touch with all that is going on in the world of mathematics."--Vaidehi Nathan, Organiser "I invite the reader of this review to read the book; it contains many more interesting aspects of the interplay between mathematics and the real life than the ones I can explain."--European Mathematical Society "[E]ntertaining and informative."--Ian D. Gordon, Library Journal "This wonderful book is not just a collection of essays; there are also references including a list of notable texts, links to mathematics websites, and biographies of the contributors, which may prove to be as valuable to the reader as the essays themselves. The Best Writing on Mathematics 2011 cannot be recommended highly enough!"--Robert Schaefer, New York Journal of Books "Mathematics instructor Pitici turns out a second volume of unexpectedly fascinating mathematical research, musings, and studies that explore subjects from art to medicine. . . . From a discussion of the utility of mathematics in stone and bronze sculptures to a study of computing and its interaction with the sciences, readers from many disciplines will find much to pique their interest."--Publishers Weeklyshow more

About Mircea Pitici

Mircea Pitici holds a PhD mathematics education from Cornell University, where he teaches math and writing. He has edited The Best Writing on Mathematics since 2010.show more

Table of contents

FrontMatter, pg. iContents, pg. viiForeword: Recreational Mathematics, pg. xiIntroduction, pg. xviiWhat is Mathematics For?, pg. 1A Tisket, a Tasket, an Apollonian Gasket, pg. 13The Quest for God's Number, pg. 27Meta-morphism: From Graduate Student to Networked Mathematician, pg. 35One, Two, Many: Individuality and Collectivity in Mathematics, pg. 43Reflections on the Decline of Mathematical Tables, pg. 51Under-Represented Then Over-Represented:, pg. 55Did Over-Reliance on Mathematical Models for Risk Assessment Create the Financial Crisis?, pg. 67Fill in the Blanks:, pg. 75The Great Principles of Computing, pg. 82Computer Generation of Ribbed Sculptures, pg. 93Lorenz System Offers Manifold Possibilities for Art, pg. 115Celebrating Mathematics in Stone and Bronze, pg. 150Mathematics Education, pg. 169Thinking and Comprehending in the Mathematics Classroom, pg. 188Teaching Research: Encouraging Discoveries, pg. 203Reflections of an Accidental Theorist, pg. 219The Conjoint Origin of Proof and Theoretical Physics, pg. 236What Makes Mathematics Mathematics?, pg. 257What Anti-realism in Philosophy of Mathematics Must Offer, pg. 286Seeing Numbers, pg. 312Autism and Mathematical Talent, pg. 330How Much Math is Too Much Math?, pg. 336Hidden Dimensions, pg. 347Playing with Matches, pg. 356Notable Texts, pg. 367Contributors, pg. 371Acknowledgments, pg. 379Credits, pg. 381show more

Rating details

22 ratings
4.22 out of 5 stars
5 45% (10)
4 36% (8)
3 14% (3)
2 5% (1)
1 0% (0)
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