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Everyday Calculus: Discovering the Hidden Math All Around Us

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Everyday Calculus: Discovering the Hidden Math All Around Us Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Calculus. For some of us, the word conjures up memories of ten-pound textbooks and visions of tedious abstract equations. And yet, in reality, calculus is fun, accessible, and surrounds us everywhere we go. In Everyday Calculus, Oscar Fernandez shows us how to see the math in our coffee, on the highway, and even in the night sky.

Fernandez uses our everyday experiences to skillfully reveal the hidden calculus behind a typical day's events. He guides us through how math naturally emerges from simple observations--how hot coffee cools down, for example--and in discussions of over fifty familiar events and activities. Fernandez demonstrates that calculus can be used to explore practically any aspect of our lives, including the most effective number of hours to sleep and the fastest route to get to work. He also shows that calculus can be both useful--determining which seat at the theater leads to the best viewing experience, for instance--and fascinating--exploring topics such as time travel and the age of the universe. Throughout, Fernandez presents straightforward concepts, and no prior mathematical knowledge is required. For advanced math fans, the mathematical derivations are included in the appendixes.

Whether you're new to mathematics or already a curious math enthusiast, Everyday Calculus invites you to spend a day discovering the calculus all around you. The book will convince even die-hard skeptics to view this area of math in a whole new way.

Synopsis:

"Everyday Calculus tracks a day in the life of mathematician Oscar Fernandez, from his morning cup of joe to his night out at the theater, and lets us see the world the way he does: written in equations, the language of nature. He gently guides the reader through the basics of derivatives and integrals, revealing the hidden connections lurking just beneath the surface of our daily lives."--Jennifer Ouellette, author of The Calculus Diaries

"Calculus has played an essential role in the development of engineering, medicine, physics, chemistry, geology, statistics, and a variety of other areas. But where is it in our everyday lives? In this beautiful book, Oscar Fernandez answers that question by noting all of the ways that calculus appears in the world around us, from the coffee cooling on the counter to the rain drops hitting an umbrella. You will never look at daily life in quite the same way again."--Colin Adams, coauthor of How to Ace Calculus

"With a clear style and refreshing approach, this book shows how elementary calculus is relevant to practical day-to-day events familiar to us all."--John Adam, author of X and the City: Modeling Aspects of Urban Life

"A fun and delightful read."--Thomas Garrity, Williams College

Synopsis:

"With a clear style and refreshing approach, this book shows how elementary calculus is relevant to practical day-to-day events familiar to us all."--John Adam, author of X and the City: Modeling Aspects of Urban Life

"A fun and delightful read."--Thomas Garrity, Williams College

About the Author

Oscar E. Fernandez is assistant professor of mathematics at Wellesley College.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Calculus Topics Discussed by Chapter xi

CHAPTER 1 Wake Up and Smell the Functions 1

What's Trig Got to Do with Your Morning? 2

How a Rational Function Defeated Thomas Edison, and Why Induction Powers the World 5

The Logarithms Hidden in the Air 10

The Frequency of Trig Functions 14

Galileo's Parabolic Thinking 17

CHAPTER 2 Breakfast at Newton's 21

Introducing Calculus, the CNBC Way 21

Coffee Has Its Limits 25

A Multivitamin a Day Keeps the Doctor Away 30

Derivatives Are about Change 34

CHAPTER 3 Driven by Derivatives 35

Why Do We Survive Rainy Days? 36

Politics in Derivatives, or Derivatives in Politics? 39

What the Unemployment Rate Teaches Us about the Curvature of Graphs 41

America's Ballooning Population 44

Feeling Derivatives 46

The Calculus of Time Travel 47

CHAPTER 4 Connected by Calculus 51

E-Mails, Texts, Tweets, Ah! 51

The Calculus of Colds 53

What Does Sustainability Have to Do with Catching a Cold? 56

What Does Your Retirement Income Have to Do with Traffic? 58

The Calculus of the Sweet Tooth 61

CHAPTER 5 Take a Derivative and You'll Feel Better 65

I "Heart" Differentials 65

How Life (and Nature) Uses Calculus 67

The Costly Downside of Calculus 73

The Optimal Drive Back Home 75

Catching Speeders Efficiently with Calculus 77

CHAPTER 6 Adding Things Up, the Calculus Way 81

The Little Engine That Could . . . Integrate 82

The Fundamental Theorem of Calculus 90

Using Integrals to Estimate Wait Times 93

CHAPTER 7 Derivatives Integrals: The Dream Team 97

Integration at Work-Tandoori Chicken 98

Finding the Best Seat in the House 101

Keeping the T Running with Calculus 104

Look Up to Look Back in Time 108

The Ultimate Fate of the Universe 109

The Age of the Universe 113

Epilogue 116

Appendix A Functions and Graphs 119

Appendices 1-7 125

Notes 147

Index 149

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691157559
Author:
Fernandez, Oscar E
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Author:
Fernandez, Oscar E.
Subject:
Applied
Subject:
Mathematics
Subject:
Popular science
Subject:
Mathematics-Applied
Subject:
Mathematics-Calculus
Publication Date:
20140431
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
47 line illus. 1 table.
Pages:
168
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

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Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Applied
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Everyday Calculus: Discovering the Hidden Math All Around Us New Hardcover
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Product details 168 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691157559 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "Everyday Calculus tracks a day in the life of mathematician Oscar Fernandez, from his morning cup of joe to his night out at the theater, and lets us see the world the way he does: written in equations, the language of nature. He gently guides the reader through the basics of derivatives and integrals, revealing the hidden connections lurking just beneath the surface of our daily lives."--Jennifer Ouellette, author of The Calculus Diaries

"Calculus has played an essential role in the development of engineering, medicine, physics, chemistry, geology, statistics, and a variety of other areas. But where is it in our everyday lives? In this beautiful book, Oscar Fernandez answers that question by noting all of the ways that calculus appears in the world around us, from the coffee cooling on the counter to the rain drops hitting an umbrella. You will never look at daily life in quite the same way again."--Colin Adams, coauthor of How to Ace Calculus

"With a clear style and refreshing approach, this book shows how elementary calculus is relevant to practical day-to-day events familiar to us all."--John Adam, author of X and the City: Modeling Aspects of Urban Life

"A fun and delightful read."--Thomas Garrity, Williams College

"Synopsis" by , "With a clear style and refreshing approach, this book shows how elementary calculus is relevant to practical day-to-day events familiar to us all."--John Adam, author of X and the City: Modeling Aspects of Urban Life

"A fun and delightful read."--Thomas Garrity, Williams College

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