The human imagination seems able to explore two very different worlds: the realm of mathematics, statistics and exact science, and the contrasting world of personal experience. This book explores the unexpected relationships that tie these two worlds together.
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Mathematician John Allen Paulos bravely bridges the scientific and literary cultures with this amusing, enlightening look at numbers and stories. If you think those two things go together like a "horse and a paperclip," as Allen wryly observes, you only have to look at phenomena like the Bible codes, the stock market's ups and downs, and the Clinton sex scandal to begin to understand the hidden bonds between them. Put simply, mathematics can describe everything that happens, and everything that happens contextualises mathematics. In demonstrating this, Paulos continues the noble numeracy crusade he began with A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper and Beyond Numeracy. Perhaps the most compelling thought experiments in the book are those of the statistics of stereotyping and race relations. Paulos shows, mathematically, that minority status makes achieving equality extraordinarily difficult.
If you want to keep hold of your comfortable worldview, don't read Once Upon a Number. But you'll be missing out on an unforgettable reminder of what chance, coincidence and odds really mean, along with several valuable life lessons that may help you understand lost socks, racism and mistaken identity. --Therese Littleton, Amazon.comAbout the Author:
John Allen Paulos received his Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Wisconsin and is professor of mathematics at Temple University. Dr. Paulos has written a number of scholarly papers on mathematical logic, probability, and the philosophy of science. He is also the author "of Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences, Beyond Numeracy: Ruminations of a Numbers Man," "Mathematics and Humor," and "A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper." He lives in Philadelphia with his wife and two children.
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd 02/03/2000, 2000. Book Condition: Good. Will be shipped promptly from UK warehouse. Book is in good condition with no missing pages, no damage or soiling and tight spine. There may be some dog-eared pages showing previous use but overall a great book. Bookseller Inventory # 9053-9780140281798
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd 02/03/2000, 2000. Book Condition: Good. This book is in good or better condition. It has no tears to the pages and no pages will be missing from the book. The spine of the book is still in great condition and the front cover is generally unmarked. It has signs of previous use but overall is in really nice, tight condition. Shipping is normally same day from our UK warehouse. We offer a money back guarantee if you are not satisfied. Bookseller Inventory # 9053-9780140281798
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, London, 2000. Soft cover. Book Condition: Very Good. Good condition, book looks almost new apart from a faint crease on the spine. The hidden mathematical logic of stories. Published in 2000. Bookseller Inventory # 4005207