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on October 11, 1997
I have the fifth edition of the text, which is now in its eight edition. This is an excellent book, and it is very entertaining to read--a description that does not fit many mathematics textbooks. Although geared for students without much math background, it is an enjoyable read for all, with its engaging sidebars, its sense of the history, and believe it or not, a sense of humor (for instance, a problem requiring you to create a Venn diagram for the topics of country songs--truckers, prison and love).

A a philosopher, it is refreshing that the first 100 pages are devoted to set theory and logic--something that is not focused on often enough in basic courses. Most topics are likewise presented with a philosophical angle--for example, the first page points out the problems with defining "set." Utlimately, all definitions of set are circular--does this make "set" undisputably axiomatic? These kinds of problems are at least implied throughout the text. The effect is as deligtful as it is rare. You are not given the sense that the subject matter is complete, instead you are inspired to solve the dilemmas. While the incompleteness and conundrums are common knowledge to mathematics graduate students, they are not frequently imparted to students taking basic courses.

That is a shame. When I was in high school, I felt turned off from math--as did many of my friends, because it was presented as a dry, static subject. Memorizing formulas and theorems was like memorizing the Gettysburg Address. Mathematical Ideas does the opposite--it shows an open door for creative problem solving and makes you hungry to explore.
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on August 8, 2007
I thought that this was a fabulous book for an overview of mathematics concepts. The explanations were clear and the problems throughout each chapter and the chapter reviews were excellent practice questions for the Teachers Examination for my state (GA). Fantastic book!!
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on February 15, 2008
This book is titled with the MathXL tutorials on CD. I bought the book brand new, believing that the CD came with. IT DOES NOT! It was very misleading of amazon and an inconvenience to me. I couldn't do my math homework for over a week due to the fact that shipping was insanely slow and then the order was not what was expected. Don't buy this book here if you need the CD or access code otherwise it cost an extra $50 from the publisher for it.
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on May 14, 2014
I order this book since the title states that it is the expanded edition, but it is not. I didn't fully expect the MyMathLab Student Access Kit, since many sellers say that additional materials are not always included, however, when the name specifically including the kit, I was disappointed. I had to order another text book because I needed the 11th expanded edition.
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I am afraid this is one of the few books I marked in (at least in pencil).

I have had course before and after this book but I keep it because it crosses disciplines, or at least shows practical uses and obscure theoretical uses for math.

It is the sidebar information that keeps your actually intrigued in the book.

A sample side bar is:

Breaking codes - finding prime factors of extremely large numbers has been considered a mere computer exercise- interesting for improved methods of working with computers, but of no value of its own right. This has changed in recent years with the new methods of "computer coding" in which very large numbers are used in an attempt to provide unbreakable codes for computer data. Just as fast as these numbers are used, other people try to find prime factors of them so that the code can be broken.

Then we get how-to examples.
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on June 29, 2013
All the appropriate material is in the book. I wouldn't give it 5 stars because there are some pages that were misprinted. The end of a couple chapters were printed in black and white. Some pages were printed off and there are a lot of blank pages because of the misprinting of the text. The book fulfilled it's purpose but it was weird to see that kind of printing.
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on February 8, 2013
This book was mandated for us to have in school. Really to bulky, not enough introductions to the topics. I did not care for it's practice format, it needed more of breakdown guideline.
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on January 16, 2016
I needed this book for my college math class and it arrived super quick and in perfect condition it actually looks brand-new which is amazing for the price great product
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on February 28, 2014
The book is good, the explanations are very clear, but I'll give 4 stars because it is way too heavy and they only give the answers for odd exercises
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on January 25, 2011
This book and the student access code in my school's bookstore were over $200 if bought separately so I bought both here for 1/2 the price! It's a math book that's simple to understand and the access code allows you to look at study guides for the chapters. The MyMathLab site is a little confusing at first compared to other sites I've used for online classes, but not difficult in the least. I purchased my copy new from Amazon which came shrink wrapped with an attached access code to the inside cover. If you need the access code for your class, I would suggest buying a new copy of the book with attached access code which is more than likely cheaper than any school bookstore price. Or you can probably buy just the book used and get a new access code separately.
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