Group Theory in the Bedroom, and Other Mathematical Diversions
Brian Hayes is one of the most accomplished essayists active today - a claim supported not only by his prolific and continuing high-quality output but also by such honours as the National Magazine Award for his commemorative Y2K essay titled "Clock of Ages," published in the November/December 1999 issue of "The Sciences" magazine. (The also-rans that year included Tom Wolfe, Verlyn Klinkenborg, and Oliver Sacks.) Hayes' work in this genre has also appeared in such anthologies as "The Best American Magazine Writing", "The Best American Science and Nature Writing", and "The Norton Reader". Here he offers us a selection of his most memorable and accessible pieces - including "Clock of Ages" - embellishing them with an overall, scene-setting preface, reconfigured illustrations, and a refreshingly self-critical "Afterthoughts" section appended to each essay.
- Hardback | 288 pages
- 152.4 x 231.14 x 27.94mm | 476.27g
- 01 Apr 2008
- Hill & Wang Inc.,U.S.
- United States
- 41 black/white illustrations
About Brian Hayes
Brian Hayes writes the "Computing Science" column for "American Scientist "magazine, where he is a former editor in chief. His previous book, "Infrastructure: A Field Guide""to the Industrial Landscape," was published in 2005.
"As much as any book I can name, "Group Theory in the Bedroom" conveys to a general audience the playfulness involved in doing mathematics: how questions arise as a form of play, how our first attempts at answering questions usually seem naive in hindsight but are crucial for finding eventual solutions, and how a good solution just feels right." --David Austin, "Notices of the AMS" """Group Theory in the Bedroom and Other Mathematical Diversions"" is a marvelous collection of thought-provoking essays that both inform and entertain. You'll be amazed by the things you'll discover in these stories." --Ron Graham, professor of mathematics, computer science and engineering, University of California, San Diego, former chief scientist of AT&T, and past president of the American Mathematical Society, the Mathematical Association of America and the International Jugglers Association "Brian Hayes's book is a refreshing collection of superb mathematical essays. Ranging from choosing up sides to choosing names, the topics are intriguingly nonstandard. Moreover, the writing is clean, the explanations are pellucid, and the effect on the reader is exhilarating. First-rate all the way through." --John Allen Paulos, author of "Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences "and the forthcoming "Irreligion: ""A Mathematician Explains Why the Arguments for God Just Don't Add Up" "Every essay in this book is a gem of science writing on its highest level--accurate, up to date, brimming with surprising information, deep insights, and a profound love of mathematics. Its scope is awesome. Topics include a fantastic clock in Strasbourg, randomness, poverty, war, geology, genetics, gear ratios, partitions, nomenclature, group theory, and the ambiguity of the equals sign. There isn't a dull page in the book." --Martin Gardner, author of ""The Colossal Book of Short Puzzles and Problems"" and more than 60 other titles