The Nothing that is

A Natural History of Zero

Author: Robert Kaplan

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0195128427

Category: Mathematics

Page: 225

View: 6071

The value of nothing is explored in rich detail as the author reaches back as far as the ancient Sumerians to find evidence that humans have long struggled with the concept of zero, from the Greeks who may or may not have known of it, to the East where it was first used, to the modern-day desktop PC, which uses it as an essential letter in its computational alphabet.

The Art of the Infinite

The Pleasures of Mathematics

Author: Robert Kaplan,Ellen Kaplan

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780195147438

Category: Mathematics

Page: 324

View: 6130

Traces the development of mathematical thinking and describes the characteristics of the "republic of numbers" in terms of humankind's fascination with, and growing knowledge of, infinity.

The Art of the Infinite

The Pleasures of Mathematics

Author: Robert Kaplan,Ellen Kaplan

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 160819888X

Category: Mathematics

Page: 416

View: 2657

A witty, conversational, and accessible tour of math's profoundest mysteries. Mathematical symbols, for mathematicians, store worlds of meaning, leap continents and centuries. But we need not master symbols to grasp the magnificent abstractions they represent, and to which all art aspires. Through language, anyone can come to delight in the works of mathematical art, which are among our kind's greatest glories. Taking the concept of infinity, in its countless guises, as a starting point and a helpful touchstone, the founders of Harvard's pioneering Math Circle program Robert and Ellen Kaplan guide us through the “Republic of Numbers,” where we meet both its upstanding citizens and its more shadowy dwellers, explore realms where only the imagination can go, and grapple with math's most profound uncertainties, including the question of truth itself-do we discover mathematical principles, or invent them?

Out of the Labyrinth

Setting Mathematics Free

Author: Robert Kaplan,Ellen Kaplan

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1608198898

Category: Mathematics

Page: 256

View: 6686

“In this sparkling narrative, mathematics is indeed set free.” -Michael Shermer, author of The Believing Brain In classrooms around the world, Robert and Ellen Kaplan's pioneering Math Circle program, begun at Harvard, has introduced students ages six to sixty to the pleasures of mathematics, exploring topics that range from Roman numerals to quantum mechanics. In Out of the Labyrinth, the Kaplans reveal the secrets of their highly successful approach, which embraces the exhilarating joy of math's “accessible mysteries.” Stocked with puzzles, colorful anecdotes, and insights from the authors' own teaching experience, Out of the Labyrinth is both an engaging and practical guide for parents and educators, and a treasure chest of mathematical discoveries. For any reader who has felt the excitement of mathematical discovery-or tried to convey it to someone else-this volume will be a delightful and valued companion.

Revelation of the Bible

The Book of Genesis

Author: Moshe Mazin

Publisher: iUniverse

ISBN: 9781450285605

Category: Religion

Page: 284

View: 5424

Revelation of the Bible: The Book of Genesis is the first volume in a series on biblical revelations offering timely insights into the world and revealing the prophecies of Jacob. Author Moshe Mazin identifies the Messiah out of the house of Judah. This volume explores creation from both scientific and biblical perspectives. The secrets of creation are examined along with the meaning of life, the location of the Garden of Eden, and the story of Adam and Eve. What is the meaning of the tree of knowledge and who are the children of God? HaLevi provides a detailed analysis of the seven names of God and their meanings as well as the selection of Abraham as God’s chosen person. He follows the Hebrew text of Genesis and in some cases paraphrases the specific content for clarity. He has not included any English translations of the Hebrew text because he believes that there are many such translations that vary too widely in their interpretations. Revelation of the Bible offers rare insights into the book of Genesis based upon the Kabbalah and scientific scrutiny.

Algorithmic Composition

Paradigms of Automated Music Generation

Author: Gerhard Nierhaus

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3211755403

Category: Mathematics

Page: 287

View: 9189

Algorithmic composition – composing by means of formalizable methods – has a century old tradition not only in occidental music history. This is the first book to provide a detailed overview of prominent procedures of algorithmic composition in a pragmatic way rather than by treating formalizable aspects in single works. In addition to an historic overview, each chapter presents a specific class of algorithm in a compositional context by providing a general introduction to its development and theoretical basis and describes different musical applications. Each chapter outlines the strengths, weaknesses and possible aesthetical implications resulting from the application of the treated approaches. Topics covered are: markov models, generative grammars, transition networks, chaos and self-similarity, genetic algorithms, cellular automata, neural networks and artificial intelligence are covered. The comprehensive bibliography makes this work ideal for the musician and the researcher alike.

Finding Zero

A Mathematician's Odyssey to Uncover the Origins of Numbers

Author: Amir D. Aczel

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1466879106

Category: Mathematics

Page: 256

View: 4103

The invention of numerals is perhaps the greatest abstraction the human mind has ever created. Virtually everything in our lives is digital, numerical, or quantified. The story of how and where we got these numerals, which we so depend on, has for thousands of years been shrouded in mystery. Finding Zero is an adventure filled saga of Amir Aczel's lifelong obsession: to find the original sources of our numerals. Aczel has doggedly crisscrossed the ancient world, scouring dusty, moldy texts, cross examining so-called scholars who offered wildly differing sets of facts, and ultimately penetrating deep into a Cambodian jungle to find a definitive proof. Here, he takes the reader along for the ride. The history begins with the early Babylonian cuneiform numbers, followed by the later Greek and Roman letter numerals. Then Aczel asks the key question: where do the numbers we use today, the so-called Hindu-Arabic numerals, come from? It is this search that leads him to explore uncharted territory, to go on a grand quest into India, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and ultimately into the wilds of Cambodia. There he is blown away to find the earliest zero—the keystone of our entire system of numbers—on a crumbling, vine-covered wall of a seventh-century temple adorned with eaten-away erotic sculptures. While on this odyssey, Aczel meets a host of fascinating characters: academics in search of truth, jungle trekkers looking for adventure, surprisingly honest politicians, shameless smugglers, and treacherous archaeological thieves—who finally reveal where our numbers come from.

Anatomy of a Short Story

Nabokov's Puzzles, Codes, "Signs and Symbols"

Author: Yuri Leving

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1441107681

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 432

View: 2911

Since its first publication in 1948, one of Vladimir Nabokov's shortest short stories, "Signs and Symbols," has generated perhaps more interpretations and critical appraisal than any other that he wrote. It has been called "one of the greatest short stories ever written" and "a triumph of economy and force, minute realism and shimmering mystery" (Brian Boyd, Vladimir Nabokov: The American Years). Anatomy of a Short Story contains: • the full text of "Signs and Symbols," line numbered and referenced throughout • correspondence about the story, most of it never before published, between Nabokov and the editor of The New Yorker, where the story was first published • 33 essays of literary criticism, bringing together classic essays and new interpretations • a round-table discussion in which a screenwriter, a theater scholar, a mathematician, a psychiatrist, and a literary scholar bring their perspectives to bear on "Signs and Symbols" Anatomy of a Short Story illuminates the ways in which we interpret fiction, and the short story in particular.

Book Lust

Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment, and Reason

Author: Nancy Pearl

Publisher: Sasquatch Books

ISBN: 1570616590

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 304

View: 3830

What to read next is every book lover's greatest dilemma. Nancy Pearl comes to the rescue with this wide-ranging and fun guide to the best reading new and old. Pearl, who inspired legions of litterateurs with "What If All (name the city) Read the Same Book," has devised reading lists that cater to every mood, occasion, and personality. These annotated lists cover such topics as mother-daughter relationships, science for nonscientists, mysteries of all stripes, African-American fiction from a female point of view, must-reads for kids, books on bicycling, "chick-lit," and many more. Pearl's enthusiasm and taste shine throughout.

The Why of Things

Causality in Science, Medicine, and Life

Author: Peter V. Rabins

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231535457

Category: Science

Page: 304

View: 6760

Why was there a meltdown at the Fukushima power plant? Why do some people get cancer and not others? Why is global warming happening? Why does one person get depressed in the face of life's vicissitudes while another finds resilience? Questions like these—questions of causality—form the basis of modern scientific inquiry, posing profound intellectual and methodological challenges for researchers in the physical, natural, biomedical, and social sciences. In this groundbreaking book, noted psychiatrist and author Peter Rabins offers a conceptual framework for analyzing daunting questions of causality. Navigating a lively intellectual voyage between the shoals of strict reductionism and relativism, Rabins maps a three-facet model of causality and applies it to a variety of questions in science, medicine, economics, and more. Throughout this book, Rabins situates his argument within relevant scientific contexts, such as quantum mechanics, cybernetics, chaos theory, and epigenetics. A renowned communicator of complex concepts and scientific ideas, Rabins helps readers stretch their minds beyond the realm of popular literary tipping points, blinks, and freakonomic explanations of the world.

The Zeronauts

Breaking the Sustainability Barrier

Author: John Elkington

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1849713979

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 276

View: 431

A world of 9 billion people by mid-century will demand fundamental changes in our mindsets, behaviors, cultures, and overarching paradigm. Just as our species broke the Sound Barrier during the 1940s and 1950s, a new breed of innovator, entrepreneur, and investor is lining up to break the Sustainability Barrier. In this book, John Elkington introduces the Zeronauts – a new breed of innovator, determined to drive problems such as carbon, waste, toxics, and poverty to zero – as well as creating the first Zeronaut Roll of Honor, spotlighting 50 pioneers in the field of zero. Zeronauts are innovating in an astonishing range of areas, tackling hugely diverse economic, social, environmental, and governance challenges. To give a sense of progress to date, we zero in on five key challenges (the 5Ps): population growth, pandemics, poverty, pollution, and proliferation. The power of zero has been trumpeted, notably in relation to zero defects. This book spotlights key lessons learned in the field of total quality management – and introduces a five-stage "Pathways to Zero" model, running through from the Eureka! discovery moment to the point where a new way of doing things becomes endemic in the economy. In order to move from incremental to transformative change, we must embrace wider framings, deeper insights, higher targets, and longer time scales. This book investigates some ways in which leading Zeronauts are pushing change in relevant directions, with cases drawn from a spectrum of human activity – from water profligacy to human genital mutilation. If we learn from these pioneers, the twenty-first century could be our best yet.

Hidden Harmonies

The Lives and Times of the Pythagorean Theorem

Author: Ellen Kaplan,Robert Kaplan

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1608192911

Category: Mathematics

Page: 304

View: 464

A squared plus b squared equals c squared. It sounds simple, doesn't it? Yet this familiar expression is a gateway into the riotous garden of mathematics, and sends us on a journey of exploration in the company of two inspired guides, acclaimed authors Robert and Ellen Kaplan. With wit, verve, and clarity, they trace the life of the Pythagorean theorem, from ancient Babylon to the present, visiting along the way Leonardo da Vinci, Albert Einstein, President James Garfield, and the Freemasons-not to mention the elusive Pythagoras himself, who almost certainly did not make the statement that bears his name. How can a theorem have more than one proof? Why does this one have more than two hundred-or is it four thousand? The Pythagorean theorem has even more applications than proofs: Ancient Egyptians used it for surveying property lines, and today astronomers call on it to measure the distance between stars. Its generalizations are stunning-the theorem works even with shapes on the sides that aren't squares, and not just in two dimensions, but any number you like, up to infinity. And perhaps its most intriguing feature of all, this tidy expression opened the door to the world of irrational numbers, an untidy discovery that deeply troubled Pythagoras's disciples. Like the authors' bestselling The Nothing That Is and Chances Are . . .-hailed as "erudite and witty," "magnificent," and "exhilarating"-Hidden Harmonies makes the excitement of mathematics palpable.

The Semantic Sphere 1

Computation, Cognition and Information Economy

Author: Pierre Lévy

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1118601513

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 381

View: 2960

The new digital media offers us an unprecedented memory capacity,an ubiquitous communication channel and a growing computing power.How can we exploit this medium to augment our personal and socialcognitive processes at the service of human development? Combininga deep knowledge of humanities and social sciences as well as areal familiarity with computer science issues, this bookexplains the collaborative construction of a globalhypercortex coordinated by a computable metalanguage. Byrecognizing fully the symbolic and social nature of humancognition, we could transform our current opaque global brain intoa reflexive collective intelligence.

Imagining Numbers

(particularly the square root of minus fifteen)

Author: Barry Mazur

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 1429931469

Category: Mathematics

Page: 288

View: 813

How the elusive imaginary number was first imagined, and how to imagine it yourself Imagining Numbers (particularly the square root of minus fifteen) is Barry Mazur's invitation to those who take delight in the imaginative work of reading poetry, but may have no background in math, to make a leap of the imagination in mathematics. Imaginary numbers entered into mathematics in sixteenth-century Italy and were used with immediate success, but nevertheless presented an intriguing challenge to the imagination. It took more than two hundred years for mathematicians to discover a satisfactory way of "imagining" these numbers. With discussions about how we comprehend ideas both in poetry and in mathematics, Mazur reviews some of the writings of the earliest explorers of these elusive figures, such as Rafael Bombelli, an engineer who spent most of his life draining the swamps of Tuscany and who in his spare moments composed his great treatise "L'Algebra". Mazur encourages his readers to share the early bafflement of these Renaissance thinkers. Then he shows us, step by step, how to begin imagining, ourselves, imaginary numbers.

Challenging Change

Literary and Linguistic Responses

Author: Vesna Lopičić,Biljana Mišić Ilić

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

ISBN: 1443839523

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 350

View: 1506

This book, Challenging Change: Literary and Linguistic Responses, is a collection of twenty-three articles which examine change – understood in the broadest sense – as the need of the modern man to redefine, revise, deconstruct and reconstruct previous theories, histories, moralities, social relationships, forms of language and language use. In these times of great change, when the only constant seems to be change itself, the authors of these essays respond to the challenge and approach the notion of change from the perspectives of literary studies and linguistics. The book opens with an introductory overview, followed by twenty-three articles divided into two sections. The authors of the articles come from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Romania, the United States, Canada, Japan, and Norway.

The Oxford Handbook of Process Philosophy and Organization Studies

Author: Jenny Helin,Tor Hernes,Daniel Hjorth,Robin Holt

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191648108

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 648

View: 587

Process approaches to organization studies focus on flow, activities, and evolution, understanding organizations and organizing as processes in the making. They stand in contrast to positivist approaches that see organizations and phenomena as fixed, static, and measurable. Process approaches draw on a range of ideas and philosophies. The Handbook examines 34 philosophers and social theorists, both those commonly linked to process thinking, such as Whitehead, Bergson and James, and those that are not as often addressed from a process perspective such as Dilthey and Tarde. Each chapter addresses the background and context of this thinker, their work (with a focus on the processual elements), and the potential contribution to organization and management research. For students and scholars in the field of Organization Studies this book is an entry point into the work of philosophical thinkers and social theorists for whom the world is far from being a solid place.

Dictionary of Visual Discourse

A Dialectical Lexicon of Terms

Author: Dr Barry Sandywell

Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.

ISBN: 1409486621

Category: Art

Page: 722

View: 6105

This substantial and ambitious dictionary explores the languages and cultures of visual studies. It provides the basis for understanding the foundations and motivations of current theoretical and academic discourse, as well as the different forms of visual culture that have come to organize everyday life. The book is firmly placed in the context of the 'visual turn' in contemporary thought. It has been designed as an interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary introduction to the vocabularies and grammars of visuality that inform thinking in the arts and humanities today. It also offers insight into the philosophical frameworks which underpin the field of visual culture. A central theme that runs throughout the entries is the task of moving away from a narrow understanding of visuality inherited from traditional philosophy toward a richer cultural and multi-sensorial philosophy of concrete experience. The dictionary incorporates intertextual links that encourage readers to explore connections between major themes, theories and key figures in the field. In addition the author's introduction provides a comprehensive and critical introduction which documents the significance of the visual turn in contemporary theory and culture. It is accompanied by an extensive bibliography and further reading list. As both a substantive academic contribution to this growing field and a useful reference tool, this book offers a theoretical introduction to the many languages of visual discourse. It will be essential reading for graduate students and scholars in visual studies, the sociology of visual culture, cultural and media studies, philosophy, art history and theory, design, film and communication studies.

Null K

Roman

Author: Don DeLillo

Publisher: Kiepenheuer & Witsch

ISBN: 346231601X

Category: Fiction

Page: 288

View: 3800

»Wir werden geboren, ohne eine Wahl zu haben. Müssen wir deswegen auf gleiche Art sterben?« »Null Grad Kelvin« ist DeLillos klügster, humorvollster und bewegendster Roman seit Jahren, eine große Vater-Sohn-Geschichte, eine Meditation über den Tod und die Ewigkeit und eine Liebeserklärung an das Leben. Ross Lockhart ist ein Milliardär in den Sechzigern mit einer viel jüngeren Frau, Artis Martineau, die schwer krank ist. Er ist Großinvestor eines geheimen, im Verborgenen agierenden Unternehmens, das den Tod ausschalten will. Das Businessmodell: Menschliche Körper werden so lange konserviert, bis Medizin und Technik so weit sind, dass der Mensch ein Leben ohne Krankheiten und zeitliche Begrenzungen führen kann. Als Artis plant, ihren Körper aufzugeben, reist Ross’ Sohn Jeffrey an, um Abschied von seiner Stiefmutter zu nehmen, auf unbestimmte Zeit. »Wir werden geboren, ohne eine Wahl zu haben. Müssen wir deswegen auf gleiche Art sterben? Macht es den Menschen nicht gerade aus, dass er sich weigern kann, sein Schicksal zu akzeptieren?« Diese Fragen treiben Ross um, der mit aller Macht in eine andere Dimension menschlichen Lebens vorstoßen möchte. Sein Sohn hingegen verteidigt leidenschaftlich die Ansicht, dass es des Menschen Bestimmung ist, im Hier und Jetzt zu leben. »Null Grad Kelvin« ist ein großer Wurf, ein brillanter Roman, der an den Kern unserer Existenz rührt.