200% of Nothing: An Eye-Opening Tour through the Twists and Turns of Math Abuse and Innumeracy

Overview

Acclaim for "In today's world, 'innumeracy' is an even greater danger than illiteracy, and is perhaps even more common. Advertisers and politicians exploit it; intellectuals (self-styled) even flaunt it. I hope that this wise and witty book will provide cures where they are possible, and warnings where they are necessary.

"It's also a lot of fun. I can guarantee that ...

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Overview

Acclaim for "In today's world, 'innumeracy' is an even greater danger than illiteracy, and is perhaps even more common. Advertisers and politicians exploit it; intellectuals (self-styled) even flaunt it. I hope that this wise and witty book will provide cures where they are possible, and warnings where they are necessary.

"It's also a lot of fun. I can guarantee that 100%."—Arthur C. Clarke

"Dewdney retells with charm and wit magnificent morsels of mathematical mayhem discovered by his army of volunteer 'abuse detectives.' From 'sample trashing' to 'numerical terrorism,' from 'percentage pumping' to 'dimensional dementia,' 200% of Nothing plumbs the depths of innumeracy in daily life and reveals what ordinary people can do about it.

A rich, readable, instructive, and persuasive book."—Lynn Arthur Steen, Professor of Mathematics, St. Olaf College

With the razor-sharp wit that made him popular as the "Mathematical Recreations" columnist for Scientific American, Dewdney exposes all the slick tricks and subtle schemes used by advertisers, politicians, stockbrokers, car dealers, and just about anybody who tries to impress us with numbers. Amusing examples of every kind of math abuse taken from real-life cases.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471145745
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/9/1996
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 1,006,705
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.45 (d)

Meet the Author

A. K. DEWDNEY, Ph.D., is Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Western Ontario. Well-known for his popular "Mathematical Recreations" column, which ran in Scientific American for more than eight years, he is also the author of several books, including The Armchair Universe and The Planiverse: Computer Contact with a Two-Dimensional World.

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Table of Contents

Innumeracy and Math Abuse.
Statistics and Damned Lies.
The Mathematics of Advertising.
Intelligent Dice.
The Law of Zero Return.
Caveat Emptor.
The Government Figures.
Living with Risk.
Gee-Whiz Media Math.
The Tip of the Iceberg.
Everybody Is a Mathematician.
Street Math.
Annotated Bibliography.
Acknowledgments: The Abuse Detectives.
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