One to Nine: The Inner Life of Numbers

Front Cover
W. W. Norton & Company, May 17, 2008 - Mathematics - 336 pages
2 Reviews

What Lynne Truss did for grammar in Eats, Shoots & Leaves, Andrew Hodges now does for mathematics.

Andrew Hodges, one of Britain’s leading biographers and mathematical writers, brings numbers to three-dimensional life in this delightful and illuminating volume, filled with illustrations, which makes even the most challenging math problems accessible to the layperson. Inspired by millennia of human attempts to figure things out, this pithy book, which tackles mathematical conundrums from the ancient Greeks to superstring theory, finds a new twist to everything from musical harmony to code breaking, from the chemistry of sunflowers to the mystery of magic squares. Starting with the puzzle of defining unity, and ending with the recurring nines of infinite decimals, Hodges tells a story that takes in quantum physics, cosmology, climate change, and the origin of the computer. Hodges has written a classic work, at once playful but satisfyingly instructional, which will be ideal for the math aficionado and the Sudoku addict as well as for the life of the party.

What people are saying - Write a review

ONE TO NINE: The Inner Life of Numbers

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A mother lode of lore and learning about the digits.Hodges (Mathematics/Oxford Univ.; Alan Turing: The Enigma, 1983) has much to say about logic, computers, binary (and other base) notational systems ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - aliay - LibraryThing

Call it dorky airplane reading-- I haven't got past the first chapter, but so far it jumps from topic to topic, from idea to idea. It's just having fun. While it might not be superbly rigorous or ... Read full review


The Unloved One
To Be or Not to Be
Its a Square World
Fifth Freedom
The Joy of Six
The Wonder of it All
Sound Bytes
End Times Table
Handson Experience
Index of Main Subjects

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2008)

Andrew Hodges is the author of Alan Turing: The Enigma, described by The New Yorker as “one of the finest scientific biographies ever written.” He is a lecturer at Wadham College, Oxford University.

Bibliographic information