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The Magical Maze: Seeing the World Through Mathematical Eyes 1st Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0471350651
ISBN-10: 0471350656
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Math is fun? It is in Ian Stewart's romp through a labyrinth of possibilities and logic. Although some of the delightful puzzles, problems and teasers will give your brain a workout, you will be glad you followed the path to the end. Stewart uses the maze metaphor (the book has an "entrance," "passages," and an "exit" rather than an introduction, chapters, and an end) to illustrate the mental journeys we take when solving everything from bar tricks to problems of artificial intelligence. Difficult points are illustrated with an imaginary journey and lots of fun games. Real-life examples of mathematical "magic" abound, including the trails of slime-molds and the dimples in golf balls. Great walk through the jungle of probability. --Therese Littleton --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Publisher

Internationally acclaimed popular math and science author Ian Stewart has outdone himself with this infinitely entertaining romp through 4,000 years of mathematical monkey business. As with mathematics itself, fresh wonders await readers at every turn in this crazy quilt of fun games, mindboggling puzzles, fantastical parables, and fascinating yarns. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 268 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 1 edition (1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471350656
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471350651
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #945,076 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By T. J. Ellis on November 29, 2005
Format: Paperback
Other reviewers have criticized this book for its lack of detail and mathematical depth. Although that may be true for the experienced mathematician, this is an EXCELLENT introduction to the world of recreational mathematics. This book shows that math can be fun and useful and explains it in a way that anyone can understand. I often wondered, when I was younger, where logic tied in with math... I loved logic games and puzzles, things labeled as "math games" but I hated "math" -- arithmatic is totally lame. This book completely bridges the gap between logic games and mathematics and submerses the reader in a whole new, wonderful world. However, if you are already familiar with this world it may feel kind of like watching Seseme Street -- entertaining, but attempting to teach things you learned long ago. Either way it's an entertaining and educational (for the non-mathematician) romp in the frivolities of mathematics.
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Format: Hardcover
If you are already familiar with math, then this book won't be all that interesting to you. It doesn't go into too much depth about the mathematical principles behind the concepts it discusses, and it doesn't involve all that much actual math.

This book is really targetted towards people who never really saw math as anything other than another subject they hated in school, and it seeks to change their mind.

I was never that much of a "math person" before I read this book, and I just saw math as another subject in school, and I got average grades in math, and that was all it was to me.

This book taught me how to "think like a mathematician". I started to find myself actually liking math, and lo and behold, my grades even improved.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who has an ill view of mathematics, and would like to improve their general experience with it.

You might even find that you actually like math once you start looking at it as something besides a bunch of useless numbers, or a difficult class to get past.
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Format: Hardcover
The content in this book is suitable only for beginners. If u think that u are quite familiar with recreational mathematic, this book is quite tedious and have no new topic.
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