Summer Reading Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | June 20, 2014

Lisa Howorth: IMG So Many Books, So Many Writers



I'm not a bookseller, but I'm married to one, and Square Books is a family. And we all know about families and how hard it is to disassociate... Continue »

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$10.50
List price: $24.95
Used Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Beaverton Science Reference- General

The Drunkard's Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives

by

The Drunkard's Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives Cover

ISBN13: 9780375424045
ISBN10: 0375424040
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 1 left in stock at $10.50!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this irreverent and illuminating book, acclaimed writer and scientist Leonard Mlodinow shows us how randomness, change, and probability reveal a tremendous amount about our daily lives, and how we misunderstand the significance of everything from a casual conversation to a major financial setback. As a result, successes and failures in life are often attributed to clear and obvious cases, when in actuality they are more profoundly influenced by chance.

The rise and fall of your favorite movie star of the most reviled CEO — in fact, of all our destinies — reflects as much as planning and innate abilities. Even the legendary Roger Maris, who beat Babe Ruth's single-season home run record, was in all likelihood not great but just lucky. And it might be shocking to realize that you are twice as likely to be killed in a car accident on your way to buying a lottery ticket than you are to win the lottery.

How could it have happened that a wine was given five out of five stars, the highest rating, in one journal and in another it was called the worst wine of the decade? Mlodinow vividly demonstrates how wine ratings, school grades, political polls, and many other things in daily life are less reliable than we believe. By showing us the true nature of change and revealing the psychological illusions that cause us to misjudge the world around us, Mlodinow gives fresh insight into what is really meaningful and how we can make decisions based on a deeper truth. From the classroom to the courtroom, from financial markets to supermarkets, from the doctor's office to the Oval Office, Mlodinow's insights will intrigue, awe, and inspire.

Offering readers not only a tour of randomness, chance, and probability but also a new way of looking at the world, this original, unexpected journey reminds us that much in our lives is about as predictable as the steps of a stumbling man fresh from a night at the bar.

Review:

Leonard Mlodinow has had, to speak informally, a pretty random career: He earned a Ph.D. in physics from Berkeley, wrote for "MacGyver" and "Star Trek" and has now settled down as a science popularizer.

A far more sober instance of randomness, however, underpins his new book, "The Drunkard's Walk." And it's not hard to see it as a sort of Rosebud, explaining why the author finds unpredictability... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"The Drunkard's Walk is a magnificent exploration of the role that chance plays in our lives. Often historical, occasionally hysterical, and consistently smart and funny, this book challenges everything we think we know." Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness

Review:

"A wonderfully readable guide to how the mathematical laws of randomness affect our lives." Stephen Hawking, author of A Brief History of Time

Review:

"Fast, chatty, very readable, and a fine introduction to ideas that everyone should know." David Berlinski, author of A Tour of the Calculus

Review:

"A science geek's delight, and useful reading for the inveterate gambler of the house." Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Leonard Mlodinow received his doctorate in physics from the University of California, Berkeley, was an Alexander von Humboldt fellow at the Max Planck Institute, and now teaches about randomness to future scientists at Caltech. Along the way he also wrote for the television series MacGyver and Star Trek: The Next Generation. His previous books include Euclid's Window: The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace, Feynman's Rainbow: A Search for Beauty in Physics and in Life, and, with Stephen Hawking, A Briefer History of Time. He lives in South Pasadena, California.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 4 comments:

Edward, September 8, 2008 (view all comments by Edward)
A great look at numbers and what they really mean. Anybody into numerology, mathematics, sports, essay grading, politics, world events-- actually pretty much anything to do with randomness; should procure this great read.
I am rating it as a 4 because it wasn't the most amazing thing I have read since sliced bread. In fact if you know anything about Galileo, Pascal, Einstein, etc., it is an erudite summary. Albeit, all in all it was enjoyable and well written.
You have 93 good reasons to read it.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(8 of 13 readers found this comment helpful)
suko95, May 28, 2008 (view all comments by suko95)
How'd you come up with the title--was it a random thought that popped into your noggin? I honestly think it's a great title for a book about a very intriguing subject. I can no longer blame myself for everything that goes wrong, nor can I accept credit for all that goes right. Wonderful concept!!

(P.S. I can't rate the book yet because I just heard about it today on the radio.)
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(26 of 31 readers found this comment helpful)
dksugarpaws, May 25, 2008 (view all comments by dksugarpaws)
The title is excellent and very provocative. I actually took a second look at the book based solely on the unusual title.
As it turns out, the book also happens to be based on thoughts that I have had for many years, the importance of randomness and chance and how it can affect our lives.
One step in the opposite direction or one minute early or late can have an impact.
Very interesting.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(11 of 19 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 4 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375424045
Author:
Mlodinow, Leonard
Publisher:
Pantheon Books
Subject:
Chaotic Behavior in Systems
Subject:
Probabilities
Subject:
Chance
Subject:
Probability & Statistics - General
Subject:
Random variables
Subject:
Probability
Subject:
Mathematical Physics
Subject:
Mathematics-Popular Chaos and Fractals
Copyright:
Publication Date:
May 2008
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9.30x6.34x1.03 in. 1.13 lbs.

Other books you might like

  1. Linked: How Everything Is Connected...
    Used Trade Paper $9.50
  2. SYNC: How Order Emerges from Chaos...
    Used Trade Paper $8.50
  3. The Wisdom of Crowds Used Trade Paper $6.95
  4. The Visual Display of Quantitative...
    Used Hardcover $27.00
  5. Guesstimation: Solving the World's... Used Trade Paper $11.00
  6. The Ten Most Beautiful Experiments Used Hardcover $6.50

Related Subjects


Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Advanced
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Popular Chaos and Fractals
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Probability and Statistics » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Probability and Statistics » Statistics

The Drunkard's Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$10.50 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Pantheon Books - English 9780375424045 Reviews:
"Review" by , "The Drunkard's Walk is a magnificent exploration of the role that chance plays in our lives. Often historical, occasionally hysterical, and consistently smart and funny, this book challenges everything we think we know."
"Review" by , "A wonderfully readable guide to how the mathematical laws of randomness affect our lives."
"Review" by , "Fast, chatty, very readable, and a fine introduction to ideas that everyone should know."
"Review" by , "A science geek's delight, and useful reading for the inveterate gambler of the house."
spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.