Letters to a Young Mathematician [NOOK Book]

Overview

Mathematician Ian Stewart tells readers what he wishes he had known when he was a student. He takes up subjects ranging from the philosophical to the practical-what mathematics is and why it’s worth doing, the relationship between logic and proof, the role of beauty in mathematical thinking, the future of mathematics, how to deal with the peculiarities of the mathematical community, and many others.
Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Letters to a Young Mathematician

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.99
BN.com price
(Save 33%)$15.00 List Price

Overview

Mathematician Ian Stewart tells readers what he wishes he had known when he was a student. He takes up subjects ranging from the philosophical to the practical-what mathematics is and why it’s worth doing, the relationship between logic and proof, the role of beauty in mathematical thinking, the future of mathematics, how to deal with the peculiarities of the mathematical community, and many others.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
During his illustrious career, mathematician Ian Stewart has written 140 advanced research papers and six infinitely more interesting books on his specialty, including the justly popular Flatterland. In Letters to a Young Mathematician, he invites us into his mind and his vocation. He explains what mathematicians do and why it is worth doing; discusses the role of beauty in mathematical thinking; talks about the relationship between logic and proof; and speculates about the future of the science of numbers.
Publishers Weekly
This new entry in the Art of Mentoring series takes the form of letters from a fictitious mathematician to his niece. The letters span a period of 20 years, from the time the niece is thinking about studying mathematics in high school through the early years of her academic career. The format works wonderfully to introduce readers to the basics of the discipline of mathematics while providing a sense of what mathematicians actually do. Throughout, the prolific and talented Stewart (Does God Play Dice?), a British mathematician, entertains while educating. He explains how mathematics is so much more than mere calculations and how it's used in almost every facet of our lives. He also discusses the beauty mathematicians can find in the natural world, demonstrating that a focus on numbers and patterns can enhance rather than detract from an aesthetic appreciation of the environment. Stewart also does a superb job of examining the nature and value of both applied research and pure research, which, he shows, are not nearly as disparate as many think. Although the book must be read by anyone thinking about a career in mathematics, others simply interested in learning about the field and how mathematicians think will find it compelling reading. (Apr. 17) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Stewart (mathematics, Univ. of Warwick; director, Mathematics Awareness Ctr. at Warwick; The Annotated Flatland) has written yet another mathematics popularization, this time in the form of letters to a fictitious mathematician as she progresses from the level of secondary school student to tenured university faculty member. Stewart's purpose is to explain the nature of a mathematician's work, explore some of the many practical applications of "pure" mathematics, and discuss how to teach the subject. This he accomplishes in a set of highly enjoyable chapters without any equations to frighten off his more timorous readers. He sometimes draws on his own experiences as a researcher and teacher to further enliven the narrative, often to humorous effect. This excellent book for introducing lay readers to mathematics as a profession is highly recommended for public and academic libraries. [Letters is the first scientific entry in Basic Books's "Art of Mentoring" series.-Ed.]-Jack W. Weigel, formerly with the Univ. of Michigan Lib., Ann Arbor Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465008414
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 8/1/2007
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 684,606
  • File size: 449 KB

Meet the Author

Ian Stewart is Professor of Mathematics at the University of Warwick and is well known for his writing and broadcasting about mathematics for nonspecialists. He has written over 140 research papers on such subjects as symmetry in dynamics, pattern formation, chaos, and mathematical biology, as well as numerous popular books, including Letters to a Young Mathematician, Does God Play Dice?, What Shape Is a Snowflake?, Nature’s Numbers, The Annotated Flatland, and Flatterland. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001. He lives in Coventry, England.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

1 Why do math? 1
2 How I almost became a lawyer 11
3 The breadth of mathematics 18
4 Hasn't it all been done? 33
5 Surrounded by math 45
6 How mathematicians think 53
7 How to learn math 62
8 Fear of proofs 71
9 Can't computers solve everything? 82
10 Mathematical storytelling 87
11 Going for the jugular 95
12 Blockbusters 103
13 Impossible problems 110
14 The career ladder 122
15 Pure or applied? 131
16 Where do you get those crazy ideas? 147
17 How to teach math 157
18 The mathematical community 168
19 Pigs and pick-up trucks 178
20 Pleasures and perils of collaboration 188
21 Is God a mathematician? 196
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 17, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Good read.

    Compelling thoughhts on why mathematics matters.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)