In this irreverent and illuminating book, acclaimed writer and scientist Leonard Mlodinow shows us how randomness, change, and probability reveal a tremendous amount about our daily lives, and how we misunderstand the significance of everything from a casual conversation to a major financial setback. As a result, successes and failures in life are often attributed to clear and obvious cases, when in actuality they are more profoundly influenced by chance.
The rise and fall of your favorite movie star of the most reviled CEO—in fact, of all our destinies—reflects as much as planning and innate abilities. Even the legendary Roger Maris, who beat Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record, was in all likelihood not great but just lucky. And it might be shocking to realize that you are twice as likely to be killed in a car accident on your way to buying a lottery ticket than you are to win the lottery.
How could it have happened that a wine was given five out of five stars, the highest rating, in one journal and in another it was called the worst wine of the decade? Mlodinow vividly demonstrates how wine ratings, school grades, political polls, and many other things in daily life are less reliable than we believe. By showing us the true nature of change and revealing the psychological illusions that cause us to misjudge the world around us, Mlodinow gives fresh insight into what is really meaningful and how we can make decisions based on a deeper truth.
John von Neumann - Oskar Morgenstern - Theory of Games and Economic Behavior
"Posterity may regard this book as one of the major scientific achievements of the first half of the twentieth century. This will undoubtedly be the case if the authors have succeeded in establishing a new exact science--the science of economics. The foundation which they have laid is extremely promising."--The Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society "One cannot but admire the audacity of vision, the perseverance in details, and the depth of thought displayed in almost every page of the book. . . . The appearance of a book of [this] calibre . . . is indeed a rare event."--The American Economic Review "The main achievement of the book lies, more than in its concrete results, in its having introduced into economics the tools of modern logic and in using them with an astounding power of generalization."--The Journal of Political Economy A mathematician and an economist have evolved a mathematical theory of economic and social organization, based on a theory of games strategy. Their book gives a detailed account of this theory of games, and applies it to various fundamental questions of economic and social theory.
Steven D. Levitt - Stephen J. Dubner - Freakonomics
What do estate agents and the Ku Klux Klan have in common? Why do drug dealers live with their mothers? How can your name affect how well you do in life? The answer: Freakonomics. It's at the heart of everything we do and the things that affect us daily, from sex to crime, parenting to politics, fat to cheating, fear to traffic jams. And it's all about using information about the world around us to get to the heart of what's really happening under the surface of everyday life. Now updated with the authors' New York Times columns and blog entries, this cult bestseller will show you how, by unravelling your life's secret codes, you can discover a totally new way of seeing the world.
Leonard Mlodinow - Subliminal
Leonard Mlodinow, the best-selling author of The Drunkard’s Walk and coauthor of The Grand Design (with Stephen Hawking), gives us a startling and eye-opening examination of how the unconscious mind shapes our experience of the world and how, for instance, we often misperceive our relationships with family, friends, and business associates, misunderstand the reasons for our investment decisions, and misremember important events. Your preference in politicians, the amount you tip your waiter—all judgments and perceptions reflect the workings of our mind on two levels: the conscious, of which we are aware, and the unconscious, which is hidden from us. The latter has long been the subject of speculation, but over the past two decades researchers have developed remarkable new tools for probing the hidden, or subliminal, workings of the mind. The result of this explosion of research is a new science of the unconscious and a sea change in our understanding of how the subliminal mind affects the way we live. Employing his trademark wit and lucid, accessible explanations of the most obscure scientific subjects, Leonard Mlodinow takes us on a tour of this research, unraveling the complexities of the subliminal self and increasing our understanding of how the human mind works and how we interact with friends, strangers, spouses, and coworkers. In the process he changes our view of ourselves and the world around us.
Nigel Smeeton - Dental Statistics Made Easy
This essential textbook presents the complexities of dental statistics in a user friendly way combining questions analysis advice and solutions to practical research problems. Dental Statistics Made Easy focuses on the principles of statistics and how to apply that knowledge without the use of complex algebraic formulae. For students it covers the material contained in undergraduate dental statistics courses with the added feature of a wide range of useful exercises (multiple choice short answer questions and longer problems). For practitioners especially those involved in the growing number of research networks it covers study design providing basic knowledge about the concepts of statistics and how to apply them in dental practice research. For everyday practice the chapter on diagnostic testing explains how data gathered can be used to recommend referral or reassure the patient. Dental Statistics Made Easy is the perfect introduction for practising dentists and dental students alike.
Darrell Huff - How to Lie with Statistics
Darrell Huff runs the gamut of every popularly used type of statistic, probes such things as the sample study, the tabulation method, the interview technique, or the way results are derived from the figures, and points up the countless number of dodges which are used to fool rather than to inform.
Daniel J. Levitin - The Organized Mind
New York Times bestselling author and neuroscientist Daniel J. Levitin shifts his keen insights from your brain on music to your brain in a sea of details. The information age is drowning us with an unprecedented deluge of data. At the same time, we’re expected to make more—and faster—decisions about our lives than ever before. No wonder, then, that the average American reports frequently losing car keys or reading glasses, missing appointments, and feeling worn out by the effort required just to keep up. But somehow some people become quite accomplished at managing information flow. In The Organized Mind, Daniel J. Levitin, PhD, uses the latest brain science to demonstrate how those people excel—and how readers can use their methods to regain a sense of mastery over the way they organize their homes, workplaces, and time. With lively, entertaining chapters on everything from the kitchen junk drawer to health care to executive office workflow, Levitin reveals how new research into the cognitive neuroscience of attention and memory can be applied to the challenges of our daily lives. This Is Your Brain on Music showed how to better play and appreciate music through an understanding of how the brain works. The Organized Mind shows how to navigate the churning flood of information in the twenty-first century with the same neuroscientific perspective.
Mark S. Gockenbach - Understanding and Implementing the Finite Element Method
The ﬁnite element method is the most powerful general-purpose technique for computing accurate solutions to partial differential equations. Understanding and Implementing the Finite Element Method is essential reading for those interested in understanding both the theory and the implementation of the ﬁnite element method for equilibrium problems. This book contains a thorough derivation of the finite element equations as well as sections on programming the necessary calculations, solving the finite element equations, and using a posteriori error estimates to produce validated solutions. Accessible introductions to advanced topics, such as multigrid solvers, the hierarchical basis conjugate gradient method, and adaptive mesh generation, are provided. Each chapter ends with exercises to help readers master these topics. Understanding and Implementing the Finite Element Method includes a carefully documented collection of MATLAB® programs implementing the ideas presented in the book. Readers will beneﬁt from a careful explanation of data structures and speciﬁc coding strategies and will learn how to write a ﬁnite element code from scratch. Students can use the MATLAB codes to experiment with the method and extend them in various ways to learn more about programming ﬁnite elements. This practical book should provide an excellent foundation for those who wish to delve into advanced texts on the subject, including advanced undergraduates and beginning graduate students in mathematics, engineering, and the physical sciences. Preface; Part I: The Basic Framework for Stationary Problems. Chapter 1: Some Model PDEs; Chapter 2: The weak form of a BVP; Chapter 3: The Galerkin method; Chapter 4: Piecewise polynomials and the finite element method; Chapter 5: Convergence of the finite element method; Part II Data Structures and Implementation. Chapter 6: The mesh data structure; Chapter 7: Programming the finite element method: Linear Lagrange triangles; Chapter 8: Lagrange triangles of arbitrary degree; Chapter 9: The finite element method for general BVPs; Part III: Solving the Finite Element Equations. Chapter 10: Direct solution of sparse linear systems; Chapter 11: Iterative methods: Conjugate gradients; Chapter 12: The classical stationary iterations; Chapter 13: The multigrid method; Part IV: Adaptive Methods. Chapter 14: Adaptive mesh generation; Chapter 15: Error estimators and indicators; Bibliography; Index. "Upon completion of this book a student or researcher would be well prepared to employ finite elements for an application problem or proceed to the cutting edge of research in finite element methods. The accuracy and the thoroughness of the book are excellent." — Anthony Kearsley, research mathematician, National Institute of Standards and Technology.
James Gleick - Chaos
Chaos records the birth of a new science. This new science offers a way of seeing order and pattern where formerly only the random, the erratic, the unpredictable - in short, the chaotic - had been observed. In the words of Douglas Hofstadter, "It turns out that an eerie type of chaos can lurk just behind a facade of order - and yet, deep inside the chaos lurks an even eerier type of order." Although highly mathematical in origin, chaos is a science of the everyday world, addressing questions every child has wondered about: how clouds form, how smoke rises, how water eddies in a stream. Chaos is a history of discovery. It chronicles, in the words of the scientists themselves, their conflicts and frustrations, their emotions and moments of revelation. After reading Chaos, you will never look at the world in quite the same way again.
Barbara Oakley - A Mind For Numbers
Whether you are a student struggling to fulfill a math or science requirement, or you are embarking on a career change that requires a higher level of math competency, A Mind for Numbers offers the tools you need to get a better grasp of that intimidating but inescapable field. Engineering professor Barbara Oakley knows firsthand how it feels to struggle with math. She flunked her way through high school math and science courses, before enlisting in the army immediately after graduation. When she saw how her lack of mathematical and technical savvy severely limited her options—both to rise in the military and to explore other careers—she returned to school with a newfound determination to re-tool her brain to master the very subjects that had given her so much trouble throughout her entire life. In A Mind for Numbers, Dr. Oakley lets us in on the secrets to effectively learning math and science—secrets that even dedicated and successful students wish they'd known earlier. Contrary to popular belief, math requires creative, as well as analytical, thinking. Most people think that there's only one way to do a problem, when in actuality, there are often a number of different solutions—you just need the creativity to see them. For example, there are more than three hundred different known proofs of the Pythagorean Theorem. In short, studying a problem in a laser-focused way until you reach a solution is not an effective way to learn math. Rather, it involves taking the time to step away from a problem and allow the more relaxed and creative part of the brain to take over. A Mind for Numbers shows us that we all have what it takes to excel in math, and learning it is not as painful as some might think!
Dan Ariely - The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty
The New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational and The Upside of Irrationality returns with thought-provoking work to challenge our preconceptions about dishonesty and urge us to take an honest look at ourselves. Does the chance of getting caught affect how likely we are to cheat? How do companies pave the way for dishonesty? Does collaboration make us more honest or less so? Does religion improve our honesty? Most of us think of ourselves as honest, but, in fact, we all cheat. From Washington to Wall Street, the classroom to the workplace, unethical behavior is everywhere. None of us is immune, whether it's the white lie to head off trouble or padding our expense reports. In The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty, award-winning, bestselling author Dan Ariely turns his unique insight and innovative research to the question of dishonesty. Generally, we assume that cheating, like most other decisions, is based on a rational cost-benefit analysis. But Ariely argues, and then demonstrates, that it's actually the irrational forces that we don't take into account that often determine whether we behave ethically or not. For every Enron or political bribe, there are countless puffed résumÉs, hidden commissions, and knockoff purses. In The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty, Ariely shows why some things are easier to lie about; how getting caught matters less than we think; and how business practices pave the way for unethical behavior, both intentionally and unintentionally. Ariely explores how unethical behavior works in the personal, professional, and political worlds, and how it affects all of us, even as we think of ourselves as having high moral standards. But all is not lost. Ariely also identifies what keeps us honest, pointing the way for achieving higher ethics in our everyday lives. With compelling personal and academic findings, The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty will change the way we see ourselves, our actions, and others.
Ismeretlen szerző - The Princeton Companion to Mathematics
This is a one-of-a-kind reference for anyone with a serious interest in mathematics. Edited by Timothy Gowers, a recipient of the Fields Medal, it presents nearly two hundred entries, written especially for this book by some of the world's leading mathematicians, that introduce basic mathematical tools and vocabulary; trace the development of modern mathematics; explain essential terms and concepts; examine core ideas in major areas of mathematics; describe the achievements of scores of famous mathematicians; explore the impact of mathematics on other disciplines such as biology, finance, and music--and much, much more. Unparalleled in its depth of coverage, The Princeton Companion to Mathematics surveys the most active and exciting branches of pure mathematics, providing the context and broad perspective that are vital at a time of increasing specialization in the field. Packed with information and presented in an accessible style, this is an indispensable resource for undergraduate and graduate students in mathematics as well as for researchers and scholars seeking to understand areas outside their specialties. * Features nearly 200 entries, organized thematically and written by an international team of distinguished contributors * Presents major ideas and branches of pure mathematics in a clear, accessible style * Defines and explains important mathematical concepts, methods, theorems, and open problems * Introduces the language of mathematics and the goals of mathematical research * Covers number theory, algebra, analysis, geometry, logic, probability, and more * Traces the history and development of modern mathematics * Profiles more than ninety-five mathematicians who influenced those working today * Explores the influence of mathematics on other disciplines * Includes bibliographies, cross-references, and a comprehensive index
David J. Hand - The Improbability Principle
In The Improbability Principle, the renowned statistician David J. Hand argues that extraordinarily rare events are anything but. In fact, they’re commonplace. Not only that, we should all expect to experience a miracle roughly once every month. But Hand is no believer in superstitions, prophecies, or the paranormal. His definition of “miracle” is thoroughly rational. No mystical or supernatural explanation is necessary to understand why someone is lucky enough to win the lottery twice, or is destined to be hit by lightning three times and still survive. All we need, Hand argues, is a firm grounding in a powerful set of laws: the laws of inevitability, of truly large numbers, of selection, of the probability lever, and of near enough. Together, these constitute Hand’s groundbreaking Improbability Principle. And together, they explain why we should not be so surprised to bump into a friend in a foreign country, or to come across the same unfamiliar word four times in one day. Hand wrestles with seemingly less explicable questions as well: what the Bible and Shakespeare have in common, why financial crashes are par for the course, and why lightning does strike the same place (and the same person) twice. Along the way, he teaches us how to use the Improbability Principle in our own lives—including how to cash in at a casino and how to recognize when a medicine is truly effective. An irresistible adventure into the laws behind “chance” moments and a trusty guide for understanding the world and universe we live in, The Improbability Principle will transform how you think about serendipity and luck, whether it’s in the world of business and finance or you’re merely sitting in your backyard, tossing a ball into the air and wondering where it will land.
Robert H. Frank - The Economic Naturalist - Why economics explains almost everything
This book helps you discover the secrets behind hundreds of everyday enigmas. Why is there a light in your fridge but not in your freezer? Why do 24-hour shops bother having locks on their doors? Why did Kamikaze pilots wear helmets? The answer is simple: economics. Economics doesn't just happen in classrooms or international banks. It is everywhere and influences everything we do and see, from the cinema screen to the streets. It can even explain some of life's most intriguing enigmas. For years, economist Robert Frank has been encouraging his students to use economics to explain the strange situations they encounter in everyday life, from peculiar product design to the vagaries of sex appeal. Now he shares the most intriguing - and bizarre - questions and the economic principles that answer them to reveal why many of the most puzzling parts of everyday life actually make perfect (economic) sense.'Can be returned to again and again like one of those all-you-can-eat buffets' - "New York Times". Robert H. Frank is the Henrietta Louis Johnson Professor of Management and Professor of Economics at Cornell University's Johnson Graduate School of Management. His previous books include "The Winner-Takes-All Society" (with Philip Cook), "Luxury Fever" and "Principles of Economics" (with Ben Bernanke). Frank's many awards include the Apple Distinguished Teaching Award and the Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economic Thought.
Sendhil Mullainathan - Eldar Shafir - Scarcity
A surprising and intriguing examination of how scarcity—and our flawed responses to it—shapes our lives, our society, and our cultureWhy do successful people get things done at the last minute? Why does poverty persist? Why do organizations get stuck firefighting? Why do the lonely find it hard to make friends? These questions seem unconnected, yet Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir show that they are all examples of a mind-set produced by scarcity.Drawing on cutting-edge research from behavioral science and economics, Mullainathan and Shafir show that scarcity creates a similar psychology for everyone struggling to manage with less than they need. Busy people fail to manage their time efficiently for the same reasons the poor and those maxed out on credit cards fail to manage their money. The dynamics of scarcity reveal why dieters find it hard to resist temptation, why students and busy executives mismanage their time, and why sugarcane farmers are smarter after harvest than before. Once we start thinking in terms of scarcity and the strategies it imposes, the problems of modern life come into sharper focus.Mullainathan and Shafir discuss how scarcity affects our daily lives, recounting anecdotes of their own foibles and making surprising connections that bring this research alive. Their book provides a new way of understanding why the poor stay poor and the busy stay busy, and it reveals not only how scarcity leads us astray but also how individuals and organizations can better manage scarcity for greater satisfaction and success.
Max Tegmark - Our Mathematical Universe
Max Tegmark leads us on an astonishing journey through past, present and future, and through the physics, astronomy and mathematics that are the foundation of his work, most particularly his hypothesis that our physical reality is a mathematical structure and his theory of the ultimate multiverse. In a dazzling combination of both popular and groundbreaking science, he not only helps us grasp his often mind-boggling theories, but he also shares with us some of the often surprising triumphs and disappointments that have shaped his life as a scientist. Fascinating from first to last—this is a book that has already prompted the attention and admiration of some of the most prominent scientists and mathematicians.
Stephen Skinner - Sacred Geometry
The Da Vinci Code has awakened the public to the powerful and very ancient idea that religious truths and mathematical principles are intimately intertwined. Sacred Geometry offers an accessible way of understanding how that connection is revealed in nature and the arts. Over the centuries, temple builders have relied on magic numbers to shape sacred spaces, astronomers have used geometry to calculate holy seasons, and philosophers have observed the harmony of the universe in the numerical properties of music. By showing how the discoveries of mathematics are manifested over and over again in biology and physics, and how they have inspired the greatest works of art, this illuminating study reveals the universal principles that link us to the infinite.
Michio Kaku - Visions
In Visions, physicist and author Michio Kaku examines the great scientific revolutions that have dramatically reshaped the twentieth century--the quantum mechanics, biogenetics, and artificial intelligence--and shows how they will change and alter science and the way we live.
Richard Dawkins - The Selfish Gene
The million copy international bestseller, critically acclaimed and translated into over 25 languages. This 30th anniversary edition includes a new introduction from the author as well as the original prefaces and foreword, and extracts from early reviews. As relevant and influential today as when it was first published, _The Selfish Gene_ has become a classic exposition of evolutionary thought. Professor Dawkins articulates a gene's eye view of evolution - a view giving centre stage to these persistent units of information, and in which organisms can be seen as vehicles for their replication. This imaginative, powerful, and stylistically brilliant work not only brought the insights of Neo-Darwinism to a wide audience, but galvanized the biology community, generating much debate and stimulating whole new areas of research.
Clifford Pickover - The Möbius Strip
The Möbius band is a puzzlingly twisted strip of paper joined at the ends with, remarkably, only one side. It was discovered separately in 1858 by German mathematicians August Ferdinand Möbius and Johann Benedict Listing. As Pickover (Calculus and Pizza), a prolific science author and former Discover columnist, tells us, today Möbius's strip is everywhere: it forms the familiar recycling symbol; freestyle skiers attempt a stunt called a "Möbius flip"; and it appears in the works of artists like M.C. Escher and writers like Arthur C. Clarke. Pickover uses the strip as a jumping-off point for a wide-ranging exploration of objects that are "chiral" (objects that are mirror images yet cannot be superimposed on each other) or have unusual properties of continuity. His travels take us from Earth, where he describes patented contraptions that incorporate the strip (a conveyor belt being one of the most successful), to the outer reaches of space, explaining some very strange topologies that have been theorized for the universe. Pickover is less successful in his forays into literature and the arts, and at times he wanders far afield. Readers who enjoy recreational mathematics à la Martin Gardner will get much pleasure from this inviting book.
Clifford A. Pickover - The Loom of God
From the mysterious cult of Pythagoras, to the awesome mechanics of Stonehenge, to the fearsome "gargoyles" and glorious fractals created on the computer screens of today, Pickover evokes the power of numbers and their connection with the search for the ultimate meaning of the universe. We learn that individuals through the ages have conjured numbers to predict the end of the world, to raise the dead, to find love, and to sway the outcome of wars. Even today, Pickover shows, serious mathematicians sometimes resort to mystical or religious reasoning when trying to convey the power of mathematics. Together we uncover mathematics in the most exquisite forms of nature - from the delicate shape of a spider web, to the curling spiral of a shell. We discover fractals in the branching patterns of blood vessels, plants, and mountain roots. And we grasp the power of a few simple concepts - including the gravitational constant and the speed of light - that control the destiny of the universe. Prepare yourself for a strange and often amusing journey. Let The Loom of God unlock the doors of your imagination through thought-provoking mysteries, puzzles, and problems on topics ranging from ancient Greek astronomy to Armageddon. A playground for computer hobbyists, an inspiring tome for science fiction aficionados, and an adventurous education for the curious in theology, astronomy, mathematics, and history, this book delivers a world of paradox and mystery. The Loom of God promises a creative, enticing, and unforgettable excursion along the vast tapestry, woven through history, of mathematics and the divine.