Category Archives: Books

Google Books Ngram

Pak’s history of the Catalan numbers mentioned an Ngram chart. But perhaps because I wasn’t reading carefully or possibly due to the fact that I was reading the print copy and did not access url pointing to the said chart, … Continue reading

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Queen of Mathematics

Number theory has been called the Queen of Mathematics. Until some fifty years ago, it did not occur to anyone that number theory, especially the study of prime numbers, would have any immediate applications to business. More recently, the Queen … Continue reading

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Byss and Abyss

Saw this quote attributed to Winston Churchill. A search on google books revealed that it came from chapter III of his autobiography, My Early Life: 1874-1904. I had a feeling once about Mathematics, that I saw it all — Depth … Continue reading

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baby rudin

Define a real valued function on the reals by [tex] f(x):=\begin{cases} 0, & x \not\in \mathbb{Q} \\ \frac{1}{q}, & x = \frac{p}{q}, \gcd(p,q)=1, q >0 \end{cases}[/tex]. Where is this function continuous? The problem appeared in Hyman Bass’s article in the … Continue reading

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two thousand years of combinatorics

by Don Knuth is the opening chapter to Combinatorics:Ancient & Modern, which according to its preface is perhaps the first book-length survey of the history of combinatorics. Knuth’s chapter is actually taken from his Art of Computer Programming Volume 4 … Continue reading

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Translate

It’s slightly old but I only recently saw this article about how Google Translate make use of linear transformation. The new book on my desk eta products and theta series identities has the following quote in the preface. In der … Continue reading

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Millenium Bookball

is a pretty cool mathematical sculpture by George Hart. Gone with the Wind, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham. What is not to like? Speaking of which, I still cannot believe that … Continue reading

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Advice to Young Mathematicians

The Princeton Companion to Mathematics contains a short section of sound advice to young mathematicans by Sir Micheal Atiyah and others. It is certainly worth reading. The section can be downloaded from here.

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I have trouble finding the mathematics

Two unrelated incidents. First, I attended a talk by Sergiy Klymchuk who talked about misconceptions in mathematics, especially in calculus. He also pointed out an example of a disastrous error in a paper published in a highly rated mathematics education … Continue reading

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A matter of perspective

Have you ever watched rugby matches on TV and noticed the advertisements on the field that looked 3-dimensional? I remember having the impression that the adverts were superimposed by the TV people. But when I told the wife, she plainly … Continue reading

Posted in Applications, Books, Geometry/Topology | 1 Comment

Homework

We have seen textbooks that only gives solutions to odd-numbered exercises. But have you seen a number theory text with the following exercises? 1) Prove that [tex]x^3 + y^3 = z^3[/tex] has no non-trivial solutions in integers. 2) Prove that … Continue reading

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Pi to two million digits

is a book I chanced upon in the library. The book consists, as the title states, of the constant [tex]\pi[/tex] to two million digits in 296 pages. My first reaction was, what is it doing in a university library? I’m … Continue reading

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Applications of number theory

It can get you a job? In Mr Magorium’s Wonder Emporium, the first question the prospective accountant was asked was Name the Fibonacci series from its eleventh to its sixteenth. The accountant answered correctly and after another couple of questions … Continue reading

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Hardcopy vs electronic reprints

One of the little joys in the academic life is when you finally receive the hardcopy reprints of your published paper. I guess it is an antiquated practice dating back before the electronic era. In days of old, when manuscripts … Continue reading

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The man who know Ramanujan

An article from The Hindu about Professor Bruce Berndt. The title of the article is probably a play on the book The man who knew infinity.

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Printed vs E-books

A blog post by Nicolas Carr. I personally belong to the majority who like the convenience of e-books but almost always prefer printed books (and research papers) for reading. I’ve moved to my new office for about a month and … Continue reading

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Manga guide to calculus

by Kojima and Togami (Illustrator). This is a follow up to the well received Manga guide to Statistics, which aims to use japanese manga to teach academic subjects. Having read the book I must say, I enjoyed the back story … Continue reading

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The Calculus of Friendship

by Steven Strogatz. The subtitle is “What a teacher and a student learned about life while corresponding about math” and it very aptly sums up the book. Except there is a twist. It turned out the teacher was a high … Continue reading

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Number Theory by

Pommersheim, Marks and Flapan. The full subtitle of the book is “A Lively Introduction with Proofs, Applications, and Stories.” I have to admit I only browsed through a couple of pages of the book but it already lives up to … Continue reading

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A $23 million dollar book

A very interesting post. http://www.michaeleisen.org/blog/?p=358 It is not merely the astronomical price tag but the clever detective work that figured out what lead to the crazy price and is a good example of how algorithms can go wrong. Finally it … Continue reading

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