The Beginner's Guide to Constructing the Universe: The Mathematical Archetypes of Nature, Art, and Science

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Harper Collins, Sep 29, 1995 - Science - 384 pages
2 Reviews

The Universe May Be a Mystery,
But It's No Secret

Michael Schneider leads us on a spectacular, lavishly illustrated journey along the numbers one through ten to explore the mathematical principles made visible in flowers, shells, crystals, plants, and the human body, expressed in the symbolic language of folk sayings and fairy tales, myth and religion, art and architecture. This is a new view of mathematics, not the one we learned at school but a comprehensive guide to the patterns that recur through the universe and underlie human affairs. A Beginner's Guide to Constructing, the Universe shows you:

  • Why cans, pizza, and manhole covers are round.

  • Why one and two weren't considered numbers by the ancient Greeks.

  • Why squares show up so often in goddess art and board games.

  • What property makes the spiral the most widespread shape in nature, from embryos and hair curls to hurricanes and galaxies.

  • How the human body shares the design of a bean plant and the solar system.

  • How a snowflake is like Stonehenge, and a beehive like a calendar.

  • How our ten fingers hold the secrets of both a lobster and a cathedral.

  • And much more.

 

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User Review  - LynnB - LibraryThing

This book is like a biography of the numbers 1 to 10; it's a look at how each of the numbers manifests itself in nature; how culture and mysticism have evolved around and from geometry. It's ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kencf0618 - LibraryThing

This eye halvah for the mind makes a fine and instructive gift for the brightest girl or boy in your family tree -or for most any budding artist, mathematician, or mythologist. They'd doubtless graduate to Pickover's "The Loom of God" eventually. Marvelous and encouraging. Read full review

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About the author (1995)


Michael S. Schneider is an educator developing new perceptions of nature, science, art, and mathematics, holding workshops for teachers, artists, architects, and children concerning nature's numerical language. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn and a Master's Degree in Math Education from the University of Florida. He was a Fulbright-Hayes Scholar in India and taught in public schools for eleven years. An education writer and computer consultant, he designed the geometry harmonizing the statues at the entrance to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, where he lives.

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