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p-adic Numbers: An Introduction (Universitext) Paperback – August 5, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-3540629115 ISBN-10: 3540629114 Edition: 2nd
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Editorial Reviews

Review

From the reviews:

"This is a well-written introduction to the world of p-adic numbers. The reader is led into the rich structure of the fields Qp and Cp in a beautiful balance between analytic and algebraic aspects. The overall conclusion is simple: an extraordinarily nice manner to introduce the uninitiated to the subject. Not only giving the background necessary to pursue the matter, but doing it in such a way that a healthy 'hands-on experience'is generated in the process." Mededelingen van het wiskundig genootschap

"It is perhaps the most suitable text for beginners, and I shall definitely recommend it to anyone who asks me what a p-adic number is." The Mathematical Gazette

From the reviews of the second edition:

“If I had to recommend one book on the subject to a student – or even to a fully grown mathematician who had never played with p-adic numbers before – it would still be this book. … Gouvêa has succeeded admirably in taking a topic that is not standard in the undergraduate mathematics curriculum and writing a book accessible to undergraduates that allows its reader to play with some intriguing mathematics and explore a topic which is both fun and important.” (Darren Glass, The Mathematical Association of America, January, 2011)

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Product Details

  • Series: Universitext
  • Paperback: 306 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 2nd edition (August 5, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3540629114
  • ISBN-13: 978-3540629115
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #491,192 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 53 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 27, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book really grabbed me on a number of points. First, in addressing a rather abstract topic (often not included in a basic undergraduate curriculum) it does a good job trying to compute concrete examples. It stays broad, as not to lose the reader on the messy details of any particular part of the theory. Hence the book is good even for students who are a little weak on their background. It is well-organized and exposed for an introductory-level text.
In particular, its proofs are rather clear, concise, and meaningful. There are only a couple points where Gouvea uses trickery (a la Rudin) to prove things, and he is honest enough to warn before they come. Indeed, the footnotes are quite entertaining, especially for one who has read enough math books to catch his jokes. Overall, the read is casual. It is good for independent reading.
The problems in the book are also worthy of praise. They are interspersed after proofs and in the middle of exposition, as ways to make sure the reader is following. Indeed, they are always pertinent and carefully planned. In addition, they point out ways in which mathematics authors often skip over details which the reader should actually verify for him/herself. Specifically, they perpare a student for reading graduate-level texts (which are notoriously full of this occurrence). Pedagogically, therefore, this is a very important tool, and useful book for a budding math student.
Finally, for the graduate student who wants to go down the path of p-adics, Gouvea does a good job of pointing the reader in the several different directions the literature can guide him/her. He gives references to other texts, giving just a taste of their contents, throughout. His eye towards further study is keen.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 21, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is the best introduction-level mathematics textbook I have ever read, and I have read (and own) many. Every theorem and definition is well-motivated, and problems for the reader are interspersed within the text to make sure that every subtle nuance of the exposition is understood. Though introductory, Gouvea manages to incorporate some relatively advanced topics, (as far as undergraduate mathematics goes) such as the Weierstrass Preparation Theorem, local rings, and analysis in C_p. All this and the topic at hand is fascinating to boot. p-adic numbers are perfect for anyone wishing to pick up an amazingly interesting topic not found in most undergraduate or graduate courses. In conclusion, I recommend this book to the set of people interested in p-adic numbers, and its complement.
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25 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Bahram Houchmandzadeh on July 11, 2000
Format: Paperback
You're curious about beautifull topics in math, but reading a classical texbook, browsing through a list of lemma and therorems just get you sleep ? Read this one. The idea behind theorems, and why and how they came alive are so nicely exposed that this book can replace your favorite bed time one.
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