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Mathematics the Science of Patternsby Keith J Devlin
Synopses & Reviews
To most people, mathematics means working with numbers. But as Keith Devlin shows in Mathematics: The Science of Patterns, this definition has been out of date for nearly 2,500 years. Mathematicians now see their work as the study of patterns—real or imagined, visual or mental, arising from the natural world or from within the human mind.
Using this basic definition as his central theme, Devlin explores the patterns of counting, measuring, reasoning, motion, shape, position, and prediction, revealing the powerful influence mathematics has over our perception of reality. Interweaving historical highlights and current developments, and using a minimum of formulas, Devlin celebrates the precision, purity, and elegance of mathematics.
"The great book of nature," said Galileo, "can be read only by those who know the language in which it is written. And this language is mathematics." A richly illustrated celebration of the beauty and elegance of this ever-evolving language, Mathematics: The Science of Patterns explores the many ways mathematics helps us understand our perceptions of reality--both the physical, biological, and social worlds without, and the realm of ideas and thoughts within.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 211-212) and index.
About the Author
Keith Devlin is Dean of the School of Science at Saint Mary's College of California and Senior Researcher at Stanford University's Center for the Study of Language and Information. A key participant in the six-part PBS television series "Life by the Numbers," he is the author of Life by the Numbers; Goodbye, Descartes; Logic and Information; Mathematics: The New Golden Age; and InfoSense: Turning Information into Knowledge.
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