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review SPOILER ALERT! 2020-08-04 07:43
Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors by Matt Parker
Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors - Matt Parker

TITLE: Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors


AUTHOR: Matt Parker




FORMAT: Paperback


ISBN-13: 9780241360194



"What makes a bridge wobble when it's not meant to? Billions of dollars mysteriously vanish into thin air? A building rock when its resonant frequency matches a gym class leaping to Snap's 1990 hit I've Got The Power? The answer is maths. Or, to be precise, what happens when maths goes wrong in the real world. As Matt Parker shows us, our modern lives are built on maths: computer programmes, finance, engineering. And most of the time this maths works quietly behind the scenes, until ... it doesn't. Exploring and explaining a litany of glitches, near-misses and mishaps involving the internet, big data, elections, street signs, lotteries, the Roman empire and a hapless Olympic shooting team, Matt Parker shows us the bizarre ways maths trips us up, and what this reveals about its essential place in our world. Mathematics doesn't have good 'people skills', but we would all be better off, he argues, if we saw it as a practical ally. This book shows how, by making maths our friend, we can learn from its pitfalls. It also contains puzzles, challenges, geometric socks, jokes about binary code and three deliberate mistakes. Getting it wrong has never been more fun."




An interesting and breezy collection of stories about maths errors that resulted in incorrectly illustrated and nonfunctional soccer balls, funky code, collapsing or bouncing bridges (and other structures), nonfunctional airplanes, financial disasters and disastrous space flights, amongst others. The author has a sly humour and an easy writing style. This book isn't particularly technical. The author manages to make mathematical blunders an entertaining reading experience while illustrating the importance of maths literacy (and double checking everything!).

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review 2018-10-02 08:53
The Golden Ratio by Gary B. Meisner, Rafael Araujo
The Golden Ratio: The Divine Beauty of Mathematics - Gary Meisner,Rafael Araujo

TITLE:  The Golden Ratio:  The Divine Beauty of Mathematics


AUTHOR:  Gary B. Meisner, Rafael Araujo (illustrator)


PUBLICATION DATE:  23 October 2018




ISBN-13:  9781631064869


NOTE: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley. This review is my honest opinion of the book.



The Golden Ratio examines the presence of this divine number in art and architecture throughout history, as well as its ubiquity among plants, animals, and even the cosmos. This gorgeous book features clear, entertaining, and enlightening commentary alongside stunning full-color illustrations by Venezuelan artist and architect Rafael Araujo.


From the pyramids of Giza, to quasicrystals, to the proportions of the human face, the golden ratio has an infinite capacity to generate shapes with exquisite properties. 


With its lush format and layflat dimensions that closely approximate the golden ratio, this is the ultimate coffee table book for math enthusiasts, architects, designers, and fans of sacred geometry."


The Golden Ration by Gary Meisner is an exquisitely illustration, beautifully and clearly written introductory book about the Golden Ratio and related subjects.  There are lovely full-colour illustrations and photographs on nearly every page.  The book begins with the unique properties of the golden ratio and then continues on to its appearance in art and design, architecture (pyramids, cathedrals, musical instruments), nature (leaf and petal arrangements, fractals, spirals, facial proportions, buckyballs, quantum physics, golden DNA, the nautilus controversy), and many other interesting mathematical goodies such as tessellations, platonic solids, the Fibonacci sequence, Pascal’s Triangles etc.  The book also includes appendices that deal with critical thinking, notes and further reading, and “Golden Constructions”.  There are a number of equations and geometrical illustrations, but nothing particularly complicated.  In the author’s own words:  “not everything is based on the golden ratio, but the number of places in which it seems to appear is truly amazing and we are sure to uncover it more and more as technology advances and out knowledge of the physical universe expands”. 


This is definately a book I will be adding to my library.








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