Littlewood's Miscellany

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Cambridge University Press, Oct 30, 1986 - Mathematics - 200 pages
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Littlewood's Miscellany, which includes most of the earlier work as well as much of the material Professor Littlewood collected after the publication of A Mathematician's Miscellany, allows us to see academic life in Cambridge, especially in Trinity College, through the eyes of one of its greatest figures. The joy that Professor Littlewood found in life and mathematics is reflected in the many amusing anecdotes about his contemporaries, written in his pungent, aphoristic style. The general reader should, in most instances, have no trouble following the mathematical passages. For this publication, the new material has been prepared by Béla Bollobás; his foreword is based on a talk he gave to the British Society for the History of Mathematics on the occasion of Littlewood's centenary.
 

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Contents

Foreword
1
Introduction to A Mathematicians Miscellany
23
Mathematics with Minimum Raw Material
25
From the Mathematical Tripos
44
CrossPurposes Unconscious Assumptions Howlers Misprints etc
48
The Zoo
62
Ballistics
66
The Dilemma of Probability Theory
71
Large Numbers
100
Lion and Man
114
People
118
Academic Life
132
Odds and Ends
152
Newton and the Attraction of a Sphere
169
The Discovery of Neptune
174
The AdamsAiry Affair
184

From Fermats Last Theorem to the Abolition of Capital Punishment
74
A Mathematical Education
80
Review of Ramanujans Collected Papers
94
The Mathematicians Art of Work
189
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About the author (1986)

Bela Bollobas has taught at Cambridge University's Department of Pure Maths and Mathematical Statistics for over 25 years and has been a fellow of Trinity College for 30 years. Since 1996, he has held the unique Chair of Excellence in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Memphis. Bollobas has previously written over 250 research papers in extremal and probabilistic combinatorics, functional analysis, probability theory, isoperimetric inequalities and polynomials of graphs.

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