The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics (Penguin Reference Books)

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9780141010779: The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics (Penguin Reference Books)

The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics takes in all branches of pure and applied mathematics, from algebra to mechanics and from number theory to statistics. Invaluable for students at all levels, it is also a useful and versatile source book for economists, business people, engineers, technicians and scientists of all kinds who use mathematics in the course of their work.

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"A masterpiece." -"New Scientist"

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BISECT

To divide into two equal parts. For instance, bisection of an angle involves drawing a line through the vertex that cuts the angle in half. A point, line, plane, etc. that bisects something is a bisector.

The point that bisects the line segment joining two other points is called their midpoint. If their position vectors are a and b, the midpoint has position vector ½ (a + b).

SHANKS, WILLIAM (1812-82)

English mathematician noted for his calculation in 1873 of the first 707 places of Pi. It was shown in 1946 that he made a mistake and that the values from the 528th position were incorrect.

COMBINATORICS

The branch of mathematics involved in the study of discrete objects - those where continuity plays no role. Enumeration and graph theory are important examples of areas of combinatorics. The topic has applications in many branches of science, especially computer science.

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