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One, Two, Three: Absolutely Elementary Mathematics Waldo, One, Two, Three by Hans Wilhelm One hundred problems in elementary mathematics. “One, Two, Three” is an amazing journey into the “land of the numbers”, the “ absolutely elementary” foundation of several major core mathematical areas, that is. One Two Three Absolutely Elementary Mathematics David Berlinski pdf investigator book by prufrock press inc gods highlander guide.
Open Preview See a Problem? An absolutely delightful work that was not only informative but also transformative and a bit humorous. However this book was tedious in the detail and minutiae of proving every concept he presents. He managed to make book about elementary mathematics engaging and entertaining. This may sound incredibly tedious, and it would be, except that Berlinski is somehow both a mathematician and funny. Pass it on! Stay in Touch Sign up.
Published May 10th by Pantheon first published January 1st More Details Other Editions 7. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
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Sort order. Jun 05, Brett rated it liked it Shelves: In the end, this book is about defining and proving elementary mathematics procedures. Some of the proofs are elegant, such as why two negatives equal a positive and the work with fractions. However, movement through the book is choppy and a background in math is necessary to enjoy this book's thesis.
Oct 18, Cheri rated it it was ok Shelves: If you already love mathematics and are not a mathematician, you'll enjoy this. If not I liked it, didn't love it. Berlanski gives the reader very interesting information, but is prone to both navel gazing and overstating a point for wits sake. Nov 14, J Scott Shipman rated it really liked it. Berlinski's little book was a pleasure to read.
He managed to make book about elementary mathematics engaging and entertaining. Highly recommended.
Dec 01, Ensiform rated it it was ok Shelves: If the summary above makes it seem as though this is a jaunt through the math you learned in elementary school, think again: But aside from tortuous mathematical definitions, the book is written in an airy, conversational, sometimes jocular sometimes smug tone, with many sentences given their own paragraphs in order to give them Weight.
I mean besides giving up. I enjoyed his insights on sets and some of the simpler chapters, but finished the book feeling as though Berlinski was a bit too clever for his own good, and yet not quite clever enough to make it all clear. Dec 25, Xavier Shay rated it really liked it. Weird but enjoyable. Literature plus mathematics I guess? They love the stuff.
Aug 06, Colin rated it really liked it. An entertaining jaunt through some important points in the history and philosophy of the most basic foundations in mathematics.
Oct 05, Peter rated it did not like it. This might have been a really good book if the author had stayed on topic, but two things made me stop reading: Dec 21, Brett Thomasson rated it liked it Shelves: David Berlinksi is among the leaders of writing so-called popular books about different aspects of math -- some that is highly advanced, as in The Advent of the Algorithm , and some that is very very basic, as in 's One, Two Three.
The four major functions of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are outlined as the building blocks of far more complicated functions and equ David Berlinksi is among the leaders of writing so-called popular books about different aspects of math -- some that is highly advanced, as in The Advent of the Algorithm , and some that is very very basic, as in 's One, Two Three. The four major functions of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are outlined as the building blocks of far more complicated functions and equations.
Berlinksi also digs even deeper, offering ways to think about even the idea of "number. His purpose in One, Two Three is to suggest answers for these simplest and most basic questions about AEM and to show how such answers can be deduced via logic from some very simple assumptions. One, Two Three is both aided by and labors under Berlinksi's habit of breezy and almost flippant writing.
On the one hand he largely succeeds in getting complex ideas boiled down to terms that most people can understand, and presents his arguments in ways that can be followed without specialized knowledge.
But on the other hand, his tone sometimes crosses over into flippancy in ways that can slow readers down while they finish rolling their eyes.
He too often sacrifices some clarity and direction in order to make a witty observation and in more than one place sticks in some jokes for their own sake rather than explanatory value. Whether or not Berlinksi is actually all that impressed with his own wit, he gives a good enough imitation of being so to make several parts of One, Two Three way more annoying and way less useful than they could have been.
Original available here. Feb 04, Mike Pflueger rated it liked it. This book made me think about how much we take for granted in basic mathematics. What is the abstract concept of a number, where did it come from?
However this book was tedious in the detail and minutiae of proving every concept he presents. It felt like a text book it this way, but also the overly detailed stories of the mathematicians i This book made me think about how much we take for granted in basic mathematics.
I think this book could have been pages shorter and spent less time spelling out all the details. The illustration of the number line folding on itself at zero so that the positive and negative number cancel each other out into nothingness and then unfold again to reveal creation An absolutely delightful work that was not only informative but also transformative and a bit humorous.
Blessed with a very easy to read writing style, Berlinski punctuates his thoughts about Absolutely Elementary Mathematics with some light honor here and there. I think this book would be enjoyed by every math teacher in the world, by anyone who enjoyed math in high school or college and by anyone interested in learning about the development of mathematics.
I never knew zero and one could be so An absolutely delightful work that was not only informative but also transformative and a bit humorous. I never knew zero and one could be so interesting. Feb 21, Steve rated it liked it.
Everyone is familiar with numbers, counting and basic arithmetic. But mathematician Berlinski shows the theory behind why these exist and work and the relationship of the ineffable mathematical universe and concrete reality. Although many consider math among the most rigorous disciplines resting on solid proofs, Berlinski also makes clear that in an axiomatic system where induction provides the method of proof, a good deal of faith is involved before one can even begin counting.
Mar 14, Steve Greenleaf added it Shelves: Far above my pay grade in math, a real brain stretch. However, for those with good math chops and who enjoy lively, witty prose, it should prove a good fit.
Aug 01, Rossdavidh rated it really liked it Shelves: For example, the idea of counting is the sort of thing which he takes a chapter or two to deal with, nailing down whether or not it is exactly permissible for us to do so. This may sound incredibly tedious, and it would be, except that Berlinski is somehow both a mathematician and funny. An example: One chief, two goats, many wives, as a great chief might say.
I am skeptical of such reports, because I feel quite certain that stealing one of the chief's wives would prompt the chief to observe that he has one less than many wives. If he is capable of determining that he has one less wife than he might need, he is equally capable of determining that he has one more wife than he might want.
In his proofs, he says things like, "Go ahead and substitute specific numbers for x and y in order to assure yourself that all is well", "Thank God for zero", and "Whereupon no magic now ".
Never, even for a sentence or two, are you allowed to slip into the impersonal zone of math textbooks, in which it is easy to forget that there is a human attempting to communicate something to you, the human that wrote the book.
With Berlinski, his voice, that of a wry and drily sarcastic philosopher, is ever-present. Sometimes I wonder if reading Berlinski is a trifle, something I do that is no more like reading than eating a chocolate bonbon is like a nutritious meal.
But, upon some amount of consideration, I think it is not. The central point of Berlinski's writing, for me, is not actually the math itself fascinating as he finds it. Rather, it is a point about math. What is a number? How do addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division actually work? As he delves into these subjects, he discovers and lucidly describes the beauty and complexity behind their seemingly simple exteriors, making clear how and why these mercurial, often slippery concepts are essential to who we are.
Filled with illuminating historical anecdotes and asides on some of the most fascinating mathematicians through the ages, One, Two, Three is a captivating exploration of the foundation of mathematics: David Berlinksi was born in New York City. He received a B. He has taught mathematics and philosophy at universities in the United States and France.
A treat! The writing is clean and powerful. Go, Berlinski, go. Using simple speech—and a flare for literary wordplay—Berlinski spells out historically necessary numerical notions for the public. Join Reader Rewards and earn your way to a free book! Join Reader Rewards and earn points when you purchase this book from your favorite retailer. Read An Excerpt. Nonfiction Category: Paperback —. Buy the Audiobook Download: Apple Audible downpour eMusic audiobooks.
Add to Cart. About One, Two, Three From the acclaimed author of A Tour of the Calculus and The Advent of the Algorithm, here is a riveting look at mathematics that reveals a hidden world in some of its most fundamental concepts. From the Hardcover edition. Also by David Berlinski.
See all books by David Berlinski.