Intended for juniors and seniors majoring in mathematics, as well as anyone pursuing independent study, this book traces the historical development of four different mathematical concepts by presenting readers with the original sources. Each chapter showcases a masterpiece of mathematical achievement, anchored to a sequence of selected primary sources. The authors examine the interplay between the discrete and continuous, with a focus on sums of powers. They then delineate the development of algorithms by Newton, Simpson and Smale. Next they explore our modern understanding of curvature, and finally they look at the properties of prime numbers. The book includes exercises, numerous photographs, and an annotated bibliography.
Publisher: Springer-Verlag New York Inc.
Number of pages: 340
Weight: 845 g
Dimensions: 235 x 155 x 22 mm
Edition: 2007 ed.
From the reviews:
"This book is closely related to courses of mathematics held for students at New Mexico State University ... . An important aspect of the book is the numerous exercises, which should help students to gain a deeper insight into the presented material. Numerous references and well-organized indices make the book easy to use. It can be recommended for university libraries and students with an interest in the history of mathematics presented from a modern point of view." (EMS Newsletter, September, 2008)
"This book consists of four chapters, each of which presents a `sequence of selected primary sources' leading up to a `masterpiece of mathematical achievement'. ... Each chapter contains ... lots of historical comments sketching the further development of the topic. There are also a lot of exercises. ... This is a well written and entertaining book that can (and should) be used in seminars or reading courses." (Franz Lemmermeyer, Zentralblatt MATH, Vol. 1140, 2008)
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