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Author Szpiro, George, 1950-

Title A mathematical medley : fifty easy pieces on mathematics / George G. Szpiro ; translated by Eva Burke

Publ Info Providence, R.I. : American Mathematical Society, [2010]
 Bryant Main Stacks  QA93 .S973 2010    AVAILABLE
 RWU Main Library  QA93 .S973 2010    AVAILABLE
Descript x, 236 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
text rdacontent
unmediated rdamedia
volume rdacarrier
Note Translation of 20 stories from Mathematischer Cocktail and 21 stories from Mathematik für Sonntagnachmittag, with nine new stories
Translated from German
Includes bibliographical references (p. 233-236)
Contents A baker's dozen -- Math for math's sake. Getting close to the roots -- Mock functions -- Meanderings of a mathematical proof -- All roads lead to Rome -- Secrets hidden in numbers -- Prime time for primes -- Math applied to real life. Stamps and coins -- On the (Un)fairness of queues -- Run or walk on the walkway? -- Suspicious use of the digit "9" -- The letter writers -- Wobbly tables -- Personalities. Bella Abramova Subbotovskaya and the "Jewish People's University" -- No answer from Professor Ekhad -- The yippie mathematician -- Sibling rivalry -- A diplomat with a love for numbers -- The "Wunderkind" -- Brilliant but fallible -- In the air. The plane facts -- Creating bottlenecks -- All flights lead to Paris...and Anchorage -- Long-distance flights are grounded -- Training the brain. Calculating on the left side -- Losing the language instinct -- Information overload -- The case for mental arithmetic -- Games, gifts, and other diversions. How many moves to Rubik? -- A puzzling puzzle -- Boring assembly debates -- A step too far -- Givers and takers -- Who wins tic-tac-toe? -- Liars and half-liars -- Perfect chequers ends in a draw -- Choosing and dividing. The Talmud-a precursor to game theory? -- How the cake crumbles -- Spoilt for choice -- Selecting the best Pope and the best song -- Money, and making it. Follow the money -- Earthquakes, epileptic fits, and stock market crash -- Don't shoot the messenger -- Interdisciplinary matters. Fascinating fractals -- In Dubio (probably) Pro Reo -- Once upon a time there was a mathematical problem -- If only my ringtone were unique -- Enforcing voluntary cooperation -- Code or hoax? -- Crusade against sloppy mathematics
Note "Szpiro describes in layman's terms mathematical problems that have recently been solved (or thought to have been solved), research that was published in scientific journals, and mathematical observations about contemporary life. Anecdotal stories about the lives of mathematicians and stories about famous old problems are interspersed among other vignettes."--[book cover]
LC subject Mathematics -- Miscellanea
ISBN 9780821849286 (pbk. : alk. paper)
082184928X (pbk. : alk. paper)