Synopses & Reviews
In THE BOOK OF NUMBERS, two famous mathematicians fascinated by beautiful and intriguing number patterns share their insights and discoveries with each other and with readers. John Conway is the showman, master of mathematical games and flamboyant presentations; Richard Guy is the encyclopedist, always on top of problems waiting to be solved. Together they show us why patterns and properties of numbers have captivated mathematicians and non-mathematicians alike for centuries. THE BOOK OF NUMBERS features Conway and Guy's favorite stories about all the kinds of numbers any of us is likely to encounter, and many others besides. "Our aim," the authors write, "is to bring to the inquisitive reader. . .an explanation of the many ways the word 'number' is used." They explore patterns that emerge in arithmetic, algebra, and geometry, describe these pattern' relevance both inside and outside mathematics, and introduce the strange worlds of complex, transcendental, and surreal numbers. This unique book brings together facts, pictures and stories about numbers in a way that no one but an extraordinarily talented pair of mathematician/writers could do.
From the reviews: "This is a really fascinating book either to read or to browse in, or for reference - there is a good index, and I can strongly recommend it - it should be in every school and college library!" The Mathematical Gazette "... A delightful look at numbers and their roles in everything from language to flowers to the imagination." Science News "... The great feature of the book is that anyone can read it without excessive head scratching ... You'll find plenty here to keep you occupied, amused, and informed. Buy, dip in, wallow." New Scientist
This work is an illustrated introduction to the properties of numbers and number patterns. It looks at topics, theories and applications and explores aspects of real numbers, systems, arrays and sequences.
Journey through the world of numbers with the foremost authorities and writers in the field. John Horton Conway and Richard K. Guy are two of the most accomplished, creative, and engaging number theorists any mathematically minded reader could hope to encounter. In this book, Conway and Guy lead the reader on an imaginative, often astonishing tour of the landscape of numbers. The Book of Numbers is just that - an engagingly written, heavily illustrated introduction to the fascinating, sometimes surprising properties of numbers and number patterns. The book opens up a world of topics, theories, and applications, exploring intriguing aspects of real numbers, systems, arrays and sequences, and much more. Readers will be able to use figures to figure out figures, rub elbows with famous families of numbers, prove the primacy of primes, fathom the fruitfulness of fractions, imagine imaginary numbers, investigate the infinite and infinitesimal and more.
"...the great feature of the book is that anyone can read it without excessive head scratching...You'll find plenty here to keep you occupied, amused, and informed. Buy, dip in, wallow." -IAN STEWART, NEW SCIENTIST "...a delightful look at numbers and their roles in everything from language to flowers to the imagination." -SCIENCE NEWS "...a fun and fascinating tour of numerical topics and concepts. It will have readers contemplating ideas they might never have thought were understandable or even possible." -WISCONSIN BOOKWATCH "This popularization of number theory looks like another classic." -LIBRARY JOURNAL
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Table of Contents
1. The Romance of Numbers 2. Figures from Figures Doing Arithmetic and Algebra by Geometry 3. What Comes Next? 4. Famous Families of Numbers 5. The Primacy of Primes 6. Further Fruitfulness of Fractions 7. Geometric Problems and Algebraic Numbers 8. Imagining Imaginary Numbers 9. Some Transcendental Numbers 10. Infinite and Infinitesimal Numbers