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The original, fortunately, is untainted by my irreverence (re-read your copy: I promise that not a word has changed!).
"On the ocean planet No-Moon, Second-Best Sailor contentedly lives the life of a mariner plying his trade with visiting space-dwelling Neanderthals. When his reefwife discovers that a mission fleet has targeted their homeworld for conversion, his comfortable lifestyle vanishes in an instant." "Servant-of-Unity XIV Samuel has cheerfully devoted his life to the grand wonder that is Cosmic Unity, and all he desires is to help spread its message of universal harmony to a grateful galaxy. But Samuel's awe turns to horror when he uncovers Cosmic Unity's darkest truth." "At its core, Cosmic Unity is a lovely, seductively gentle religion stating that all creatures - whether born of flesh, silicon, superconducting gases, or magnetic plasma - are equal and deserve tolerance. Yet over 22,500 years and spread by a vast hierarchy, the simple concept has mutated into a malignant and violent memeplex - heretics will not be tolerated." "Bereft of faith and rebelling against the Ecclesiarchs, Samuel is shattered and confused when he stumbles upon Second-Best Sailor, fleeing from his threatened home to a potential new habitat. Flung together by fate and supported by the Neanderthals' host of traders, Second-Best Sailor and Samuel plot a kamikaze plan to fight off the invaders. Along the way, they will need the help of the unlikeliest and most fascinating of allies." "But can they bring down an idea that has destroyed everything across tens of thousands of light-years?"--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
For general readers of science and technology titles, this engaging work on the meaning and impact of mathematical equations examines seventeen of the most important equations in history and explores not only the science behind the specific formulas, but also the wide influence of these germinal ideas on modern technologies and scientific study. Covering popular equations such as the Pythagorean theorem and Relativity, as well as more obscure and advanced topics, the work provides an entertaining journey through the development of theoretical mathematics, as well as an informative look at applied science. Numerous tables, graphs, and illustrations are provided throughout. Stewart is professor emeritus of mathematics at Warwick University. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)
The first scientific entry in the acclaimed Art of Mentoring series from Basic Books,Letters to a Young Mathematiciantells readers what Ian Stewart wishes he had known when he was a student and young faculty member. 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--are dealt with in Stewart's much-admired style, which combines subtle, easygoing humor with a talent for cutting to the heart of the matter. In the tradition of G. H. Hardy's classicA Mathematician's Apology, this book is sure to be a perennial favorite with students at all levels, as well as with other readers who are curious about the frequently incomprehensible world of mathematics.
Biologists have long dismissed mathematics as being unable to meaningfully contribute to our understanding of living beings. Within the past ten years, however, mathematicians have proven that they hold the key to unlocking the mysteries of our world--and ourselves. In The Mathematics of Life, Ian Stewart provides a fascinating overview of the vital but little-recognized role mathematics has played in pulling back the curtain on the hidden complexities of the natural world--and how its contribution will be even more vital in the years ahead. In his characteristically clear and entertaining fashion, Stewart explains how mathematicians and biologists have come to work together on some of the most difficult scientific problems that the human race has ever tackled, including the nature and origin of life itself.
Opening another drawer in his Cabinet of Curiosities, renowned mathematics professor Ian Stewart presents a new medley of games, paradoxes, and riddles inProfessor Stewart's Hoard of Mathematical Treasures. With wit and aplomb, Stewart mingles casual puzzles with grander forays into ancient and modern mathematical thought. Amongst a host of arcane and astonishing facts about every kind of number from irrational and imaginary to complex and cuneiform, we learn: How to organize chaos How matter balances anti-matter How to turn a sphere inside out (without creasing it) How to calculate pi by observing the stars ...and why you can't comb a hairy ball. Along the way Stewart offers the reader tantalizing glimpses of the mathematics underlying life and the universe. Mind-stretching, enlightening, and endlessly amusing,Professor Stewart's Hoard of Mathematical Treasureswill stimulate, delight, and enthrall.
At the heart of relativity theory, quantum mechanics, string theory, and much of modern cosmology lies one concept: symmetry. In Why Beauty Is Truth, world-famous mathematician Ian Stewart narrates the history of the emergence of this remarkable area of study. Stewart introduces us to such characters as the Renaissance Italian genius, rogue, scholar, and gambler Girolamo Cardano, who stole the modern method of solving cubic equations and published it in the first important book on algebra, and the young revolutionary Evariste Galois, who refashioned the whole of mathematics and founded the field of group theory only to die in a pointless duel over a woman before his work was published. Stewart also explores the strange numerology of real mathematics, in which particular numbers have unique and unpredictable properties related to symmetry. He shows how Wilhelm Killing discovered "Lie groups" with 14, 52, 78, 133, and 248 dimensions-groups whose very existence is a profound puzzle. Finally, Stewart describes the world beyond superstrings: the "octonionic" symmetries that may explain the very existence of the universe.
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