A Mathematical Mosaic: Patterns & Problem Solving
288 pp., paperbound, 2008
Publisher: Brendan Kelly Publishing
Ravi Vakil has accomplished more in the world of mathematics in his 37 years than many could hope to achieve in a lifetime. The four-time Putnam Fellow and current Stanford University professor shares the love he has gained for the beauty and elegance of mathematics in a newly expanded edition of his book A Mathematical Mosaic: Patterns & Problem Solving.
A Mathematical Mosaic delves into the wonders of mathematics and its interconnected patterns through puzzles and problems at a variety of difficulty levels. Along the way, it provides tantalizing glimpses of a wide range of mathematical disciplines and topics, from number theory and combinatorics to infinity and game theory. Vakil also includes eleven "Mathematical Portraits," in which he profiles past International Mathematical Olympiad winners, including Noam Elkies, the youngest professor to receive tenure at Harvard. In addition, various "Historical Digressions" offer outlines of the development of important mathematical ideas and brief biographies of such mathematicians as Galois, Gauss, and Archimedes.
A Mathematical Mosaic is perfect for students preparing themselves for mathematics competitions, for teachers looking for new ways to challenge their best students, and for anyone curious about the pleasures of mathematics.—R. Miller
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