product description page

Quite Right : The Story of Mathematics, Measurement, and Money (Hardcover) (Norman Biggs)

Quite Right : The Story of Mathematics, Measurement, and Money (Hardcover) (Norman Biggs) - image 1 of 1

about this item

Mathematics didn't spring spontaneously to life, rules and definitions set in stone for all time. Its progress story has rich connections with measurement and money that have often shaped its development and driven its progress, a process that continues to this day. Quite Right explains how simple mathematical ideas have evolved all the way from prehistoric times so that they pervade almost every aspect of life in the 21st century.Most histories of mathematics look at the narrow role of professional mathematicians through the ages. Professor Biggs' sweeping tale is far wider. Making use of new discoveries of artefacts and documents, he reveals the part that mathematics has played in the human story and reflects on the nature of mathematics itself. The story reveals the power and beauty of mathematical concepts, which often belie their utilitarian origins. The twin paradigms of logical justification and algorithmic calculation recur throughout the book. Another theme is the relationship between mathematics and measurement of all kinds. No other book covers money and measurement in this way.Includes sections on:-- The origins of banking and interest in ancient Mesopotamia-- Using mathematics to keep secrets in medieval times-- The impact of tax and trade on the development of mathematics-- Financial speculation in our information age-- The role mathematics plays today in keeping you safeQuite Right is a fascinating story, suitable for anyone interested in the foundations of the mathematical world we live in.Norman Biggs is Professor (Emeritus) of Mathematics at the London School of Economics. He is the author of 12 books, including a perennial best-selling book Discrete Mathematics (Oxford University Press). He has a special interest in measurement and was Chair of the International Society of Weights and Scales Collectors from 2009-14. He served as a Vice President of the British Society for the History of Mathematics in 2014 and is an active member of the British Numismatic Society.'This is a history of mathematics book with a difference. Instead of the usual chronological sequence of events, presented with mathematical hindsight (interpreting mathematical achievements from a modern point of view), this book tries to see things more from the context of the time - presenting the topics thematically rather than strictly chronologically, and including results and problems only when they fit into the themes EL the level of exposition is first-rate, with a far greater fluency than most mathematical writers can attain EL I am very happy to recommend it wholeheartedly.' Professor Robin Wilson, University of Oxford
Number of Pages: 176.0
Genre: Mathematics, Science
Sub-Genre: History, General
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Oxford Univ Pr
Author: Norman Biggs
Language: English
Street Date: April 11, 2016
TCIN: 50644206
UPC: 9780198753353
Item Number (DPCI): 248-09-9159

guest reviews

Prices, promotions, styles and availability may vary by store & online. See our price match guarantee. See how a store is chosen for you.