Softcover ISBN:  9781470447960 
Product Code:  MCL/22 
List Price:  $41.00 
MAA Member Price:  $36.00 
AMS Member Price:  $32.80 
Electronic ISBN:  9781470449889 
Product Code:  MCL/22.E 
List Price:  $41.00 
MAA Member Price:  $36.00 
AMS Member Price:  $32.80 

Book DetailsMSRI Mathematical Circles LibraryVolume: 22; 2018; 178 ppMSC: Primary 00; 97;
Mathematics: Rhyme and Reason is an exploration of the aesthetic value of mathematics and the culture of the mathematics community.
This book introduces budding mathematicians of all ages to mathematical ways of thinking through a series of chapters that mix episodes from the author's life with explanations of intriguing mathematical concepts and the stories of the mathematicians who discovered them. The chapters can be read independently, and most require only a background in basic high school algebra or geometry to appreciate the topics covered.
Part personal memoir, part appreciation of the poetry and humanity inherent in mathematics, this entertaining collection of stories, theorems, and reflections will be of interest to anyone curious about mathematics and the human beings who practice it.
Author appearance: Watch a lecture given by Mel Currie about his book at Brown University's Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics (ICERM) on November 8, 2018.
In the interest of fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and everyday life, MSRI and the AMS are publishing books in the Mathematical Circles Library series as a service to young people, their parents and teachers, and the mathematics profession.ReadershipHigh school students and teachers as well as mathematically curious adults.

Table of Contents

Cover

Title page

Preface

Chapter 1. The Riddle

Chapter 2. Primes

Chapter 3. Some Geometry

Chapter 4. Mysterious Pattern

Chapter 5. Some Things Add Up. Some Don’t.

Chapter 6. A Tangential Remark

Chapter 7. Plus or Minus

Chapter 8. Making the Optimal Choice

Chapter 9. Impossibilities

Chapter 10. Magnitudes of Infinity

Chapter 11. The Inevitable (Sperner’s Lemma—The Brouwer FixedPoint Theorem)

Chapter 12. Consider the Sequence (Fibonacci and Golden Ratio)

Chapter 13. What Are the Chances?

Chapter 14. The Euler Line

Chapter 15. The Dissertation

Chapter 16. The Next Prime Number Is? (Gandhi’s Formula)

Chapter 17. Bulgarian Solitaire

Chapter 18. Which is Bigger? (𝑎^{𝑏} versus 𝑏^{𝑎})

Chapter 19. Fascinating

Chapter 20. From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

Chapter 21. A Few More Words

Photos and Pictures

Appendix A. Notation, etc.

Appendix B. Mysterious

Appendix C. Impossibilities

Appendix D. Magnitudes

Appendix E. Fascinating

Back Cover


Additional Material

Reviews

With charm and elegance, the book weaves together beautiful and captivating mathematical vignettes with anecdotes from the author's life in mathematics...The real attraction is the stories from Currie's life: famous mathematicians he has known, personal mathematical struggles and triumphs, curious and amusing episodes. Currie himself is an interesting character, and we get to know a bit about his nonmathematical sides: connections with music, a proclivity for anagramology, students and colleagues he has mentored...Overall, Currie's is an attractive story. I highly recommend it, especially for readers like me who love mathematical gossip.
Dan Kalman, Mathematical Reviews 
'Mathematics: Rhyme and Reason' is like a good thriller novel—you can't put it down...Currie's book is part of the Mathematical Circles Library series, which is published 'in the interest of fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and everyday life (among) young people, their parents and teachers, and the mathematics profession.' Based on a sample of one I would say Currie's book should go a long way towards accomplishing this goal...Buy this book. Give a copy to any high school or early college students you hope to recruit to mathematics. If you ever get a chance to meet Currie or hear him speak—go!
Richard J. Wilders, MAA Reviews


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Mathematics: Rhyme and Reason is an exploration of the aesthetic value of mathematics and the culture of the mathematics community.
This book introduces budding mathematicians of all ages to mathematical ways of thinking through a series of chapters that mix episodes from the author's life with explanations of intriguing mathematical concepts and the stories of the mathematicians who discovered them. The chapters can be read independently, and most require only a background in basic high school algebra or geometry to appreciate the topics covered.
Part personal memoir, part appreciation of the poetry and humanity inherent in mathematics, this entertaining collection of stories, theorems, and reflections will be of interest to anyone curious about mathematics and the human beings who practice it.
Author appearance: Watch a lecture given by Mel Currie about his book at Brown University's Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics (ICERM) on November 8, 2018.
In the interest of fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and everyday life, MSRI and the AMS are publishing books in the Mathematical Circles Library series as a service to young people, their parents and teachers, and the mathematics profession.
High school students and teachers as well as mathematically curious adults.

Cover

Title page

Preface

Chapter 1. The Riddle

Chapter 2. Primes

Chapter 3. Some Geometry

Chapter 4. Mysterious Pattern

Chapter 5. Some Things Add Up. Some Don’t.

Chapter 6. A Tangential Remark

Chapter 7. Plus or Minus

Chapter 8. Making the Optimal Choice

Chapter 9. Impossibilities

Chapter 10. Magnitudes of Infinity

Chapter 11. The Inevitable (Sperner’s Lemma—The Brouwer FixedPoint Theorem)

Chapter 12. Consider the Sequence (Fibonacci and Golden Ratio)

Chapter 13. What Are the Chances?

Chapter 14. The Euler Line

Chapter 15. The Dissertation

Chapter 16. The Next Prime Number Is? (Gandhi’s Formula)

Chapter 17. Bulgarian Solitaire

Chapter 18. Which is Bigger? (𝑎^{𝑏} versus 𝑏^{𝑎})

Chapter 19. Fascinating

Chapter 20. From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

Chapter 21. A Few More Words

Photos and Pictures

Appendix A. Notation, etc.

Appendix B. Mysterious

Appendix C. Impossibilities

Appendix D. Magnitudes

Appendix E. Fascinating

Back Cover

With charm and elegance, the book weaves together beautiful and captivating mathematical vignettes with anecdotes from the author's life in mathematics...The real attraction is the stories from Currie's life: famous mathematicians he has known, personal mathematical struggles and triumphs, curious and amusing episodes. Currie himself is an interesting character, and we get to know a bit about his nonmathematical sides: connections with music, a proclivity for anagramology, students and colleagues he has mentored...Overall, Currie's is an attractive story. I highly recommend it, especially for readers like me who love mathematical gossip.
Dan Kalman, Mathematical Reviews 
'Mathematics: Rhyme and Reason' is like a good thriller novel—you can't put it down...Currie's book is part of the Mathematical Circles Library series, which is published 'in the interest of fostering a greater awareness and appreciation of mathematics and its connections to other disciplines and everyday life (among) young people, their parents and teachers, and the mathematics profession.' Based on a sample of one I would say Currie's book should go a long way towards accomplishing this goal...Buy this book. Give a copy to any high school or early college students you hope to recruit to mathematics. If you ever get a chance to meet Currie or hear him speak—go!
Richard J. Wilders, MAA Reviews