## Infinite Ascent: A Short History of MathematicsIn Infinite Ascent, David Berlinski, the acclaimed author of The Advent of the Algorithm, A Tour of the Calculus, and Newton’s Gift, tells the story of mathematics, bringing to life with wit, elegance, and deep insight a 2,500-year-long intellectual adventure.Berlinski focuses on the ten most important breakthroughs in mathematical history–and the men behind them. Here are Pythagoras, intoxicated by the mystical significance of numbers; Euclid, who gave the world the very idea of a proof; Leibniz and Newton, co-discoverers of the calculus; Cantor, master of the infinite; and Gödel, who in one magnificent proof placed everything in doubt. The elaboration of mathematical knowledge has meant nothing less than the unfolding of human consciousness itself. With his unmatched ability to make abstract ideas concrete and approachable, Berlinski both tells an engrossing tale and introduces us to the full power of what surely ranks as one of the greatest of all human endeavors. From the Hardcover edition. |

### What people are saying - Write a review

#### LibraryThing Review

User Review - gopfolk - LibraryThingA 4 for content...a 2 for usefulness... This book has bouts of brilliance but was short on usefulness. I found myself time and again asking what the point of this book was. I wasn't sure if Berlinski ... Read full review

#### Infinite ascent: a short history of mathematics

User Review - Not Available - Book VerdictA mathematician, lecturer, and essayist (A Tour of the Calculus), Berlinski offers an imaginative and readable romp through the history of mathematics. To help lay readers understand abstract ... Read full review

### Other editions - View all

### Common terms and phrases

algebra algorithm analytic geometry Andrew Wiles angles arithmetic axioms bers calculus Cardano cardinal number Cartesian century cians complex numbers concept coordinate system curvature curve defined definition demonstrated Descartes distance ematical equation Euclid Euclid's parallel postulate Euclidean geometry Euler exponential functions expressed fact finite formula four Galois Gauss Georg Cantor given line Gödel's theorem Greek Hilbert hyperbolic geometry identity infinite sum integral intellectual intuition Kronecker Kurt Gödel Leibniz Leopold Kronecker Lobachevsky logic logicians Mandelbrot sets mathe mathematicians matical maticians matter means method natural numbers negative numbers Newton non-Euclidean geometry once ordinary parallel postulate permutations physical plane Poincaré disk precisely prime numbers Principia Mathematica proof provable Pythagoras Pythagorean real numbers remarkable Riemann secant line sense sequence set theory simple space speed square root straight line subgroup suggest symbols symmetric group tangent line Taniyama-Shimura conjecture things thought tion triangle variables various zero