The Mathematics of Games (Dover Books on Mathematics Series)

Overview


"Mind-exercising and thought-provoking."?New Scientist
If playing games is natural for humans, analyzing games is equally natural for mathematicians. Even the simplest of games involves the fundamentals of mathematics, such as figuring out the best move or the odds of a certain chance event. This entertaining and wide-ranging guide demonstrates how simple mathematical analysis can throw unexpected light on games of every type?games of chance, ...
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The Mathematics of Games

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Overview


"Mind-exercising and thought-provoking."—New Scientist
If playing games is natural for humans, analyzing games is equally natural for mathematicians. Even the simplest of games involves the fundamentals of mathematics, such as figuring out the best move or the odds of a certain chance event. This entertaining and wide-ranging guide demonstrates how simple mathematical analysis can throw unexpected light on games of every type—games of chance, games of skill, games of chance and skill, and automatic games.
Just how random is a card shuffle or a throw of the dice? Is bluffing a valid poker strategy? How can you tell if a puzzle is unsolvable? How large a role does luck play in games like golf and soccer? This book examines each of these issues and many others, along with the general principles behind such classic puzzles as peg solitaire and Rubik's cube. Lucid, instructive, and full of surprises, it will fascinate mathematicians and gamesters alike.

This entertaining, wide-ranging guide demonsrates how simple mathematical analysis can throw unexpected light on games of every kind. John Beasley outlines the general principes behind such classic puzzles as peg solitaire, the Rubik's cube, and examples of how the study of even simple games can reveal some of the fundamental paradixes of mathematics.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780486449760
  • Publisher: Dover Publications
  • Publication date: 1/30/2006
  • Series: Dover Books on Mathematics Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 800,309
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. The luck of the deal
3. The luck of the die
4. To err is human
5. If A beats B, and B beats C...
6. Bluff and double bluff
7. The analysis of puzzles
8. Sauce for the gander
9. The measure of a game
10. When the counting has to stop
11. Round and round in circles
Further reading
Index
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