"Beautiful, Simple, Exact, Crazy" by Apoorva Khare

Beautiful, Simple, Exact, Crazy Mathematics in the Real World Apoorva Khare, Anna Lachowska

Publication date:
12 Nov 2015
Yale University Press
480 pages: 235 x 156 x 25mm
72 b-w illus.
Sales territories:

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In this vibrant work, which is ideal for both teaching and learning, Apoorva Khare and Anna Lachowska explain the mathematics essential for understanding and appreciating our quantitative world. They show with examples that mathematics is a key tool in the creation and appreciation of art, music, and literature, not just science and technology. The book covers basic mathematical topics from logarithms to statistics, but the authors eschew mundane finance and probability problems. Instead, they explain how modular arithmetic helps keep our online transactions safe, how logarithms justify the twelve-tone scale commonly used in music, and how transmissions by deep space probes are similar to knights serving as messengers for their traveling prince. Ideal for coursework in introductory mathematics and requiring no knowledge of calculus, Khare and Lachowska’s enlightening mathematics tour will appeal to a wide audience.

Apoorva Khare is currently a research associate in mathematics and statistics at Stanford University. Anna Lachowska is a lecturer in mathematics at Yale University.

“A whirlwind tour through mathematics and its applications to the real world, laced with stimulating exercises and fascinating historical insights. Destined to become a classic of mathematical exposition.”—Eli Maor, author of e: the Story of a Number and Trigonometric Delights

“Khare and Lachowska introduce bite-size pieces of important math by surrounding them with interesting context, from the Monty Hall problem for probability to a story by Dino Buzzati for velocity. Math treated with seriousness and fun.”—Michael Frame, co-author, with Benoit Mandelbrot, of Fractals, Graphics, and Mathematics Education

“It is an excellent book, well-suited for a thoughtful, quantitatively-rigorous ‘Math for Humanists’ course.”—William Goldbloom Bloch, author of The Unimaginable Mathematics of Borges’ Library of Babel

“The authors have assembled a fascinating group of very interesting topics.”—Richard Bedient, Hamilton College