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Biscuits of Number Theory (Dolciani Mathematical Expositions) Hardcover – December 16, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0883853405 ISBN-10: 088385340X

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Editorial Reviews


A collection of accessible and even profound essays on number theory gleaned from a wide variety of writers and journals--everyone from Euler to Quine, plus many recent popular expositions. An invigorating and generally undemanding excursion into surprise. A first rate book. --Bob Lockhart, London Math Society Newsletter

Art Benjamin and Ezra Brown, editors of Biscuits of Number Theory, describe this book as follows: "an assortment of articles and notes on number theory, where each item is not too big, easily digested, and makes you feel all warm and fuzzy when you're through.

Benjamin teaches at Harvey Mudd College, was names "America's best math whiz" by Reader's Digest in May 2005. He's also a professional magician who has appeared on many TV shows and National Public Radio. Brown teaches mathematics at Virginia Tech, and according to his web page, likes to bake his students actual biscuits.

Biscuits of Number Theory consists of 40 short articles copies from journals such as Math Horizons, Mathematics Magazine, Mathematics Teacher, and the American Mathematical Monthly....

The authors represented include some of the best expositors of elementary number theory: Peter Borwein, Stan Wagon, Carl Pomerance, Ivan Niven, Edward Berger, Ross Honsberger, and Martin Gardent, just to name a few. The articles are classified into seven different parts: arithmetic, primes, irrationality and continued fractions, sums of squares and polygonal numbers, Fibonacci numbers, number-theoretic functions, and elliptic curves and Fermat's last theorem.

Many of the chapters will be accessible to high school students or even bright junior high students....Other chapters will likely be very mysterious even for beginning graduate students. Furstenberg's topological proof of the infinitude of the primes will likely be incomprehensible for many students, as will the last article, about Fermat's last theorem. But that doesn't matter; it's good when a book has some content above the level of the typical reader, because this will intrigue some readers sufficiently that they'll feel the need to learn the required material. The challenge is to have the right amount, and my feeling is that this book has a good balance of material. --Jeffrey Shallit, Sigact News

Book Description

An anthology of articles ideal for use as a textbook supplement on a number theory course. The editors have selected well written bite-sized articles and notes which aid an understanding of number theory.

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Product Details

  • Series: Dolciani Mathematical Expositions
  • Hardcover: 326 pages
  • Publisher: Mathematical Association of America (December 16, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 088385340X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0883853405
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,871,041 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ESAB83 on December 25, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great taste! Delectable! Several math circle talks will come out of this, for sure. It ranges from honey-soaked tidbits to truly brilliant insights that take a while to chew and digest.
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