Number: The Language of Science

Front Cover
Pi Press, 2005 - Mathematics - 396 pages
18 Reviews
From the rudimentary mathematical abilities of prehistoric man to bizarre ideas at the edges of modern math, here is the story of mathematics through the history of its most central concept: number. Dantzig demonstrates that the evolution of numbers is inextricably linked with the history of human culture. He shows how advances in math were spurred by the demands of growing commerce in the ancient world; how the pure speculation of philosophers and religious mystics contributed to our understanding of numbers; how the exchange of ideas between cultures in times of war and imperial conquest fueled advances in knowledge; how the forces of history combine with human intuition to trigger revolutions in thought. Dantzig's exposition of the foundations and philosophy of math is accessible to all readers. He explores many of the most fascinating topics in math, such as the properties of numbers, the invention of zero, and infinity. First published in 1930, this book is, beyond doubt, the best book on the evolution of mathematics-now again in print.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
7
4 stars
7
3 stars
3
2 stars
1
1 star
0

Review: Number: The Language of Science

User Review  - Francisco Rodríguez - Goodreads

I was fascinated by the fact that the act of counting and the concept of number is not a self-evident truth inherent in human beings, but something that had to be learnt. Realizing that a pair of ... Read full review

Review: Number: The Language of Science

User Review  - Steve Gathje - Goodreads

Who could have thought a history of numbers could be so interesting. Okay, I could have thought that. And it was very interesting! Read full review

Contents

Fingerprints
1
The Empty Column
19
Numberlore
37
Copyright

13 other sections not shown

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2005)

Tobias Dantzig taught at Johns Hopkins, Columbia University, and the University of Maryland.

Bibliographic information