Top Marketplace offers for ISBN

9780285635944

Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea

Seife, Charles

3.94 avg rating
( 5,555 ratings by GoodReads )
Not the book you're looking for? Search for all books with this author and title
9780285635944: Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea

A concise and appealing look at the strangest number in the universe and its continuing role as one of the great paradoxes of human thought

The Babylonians invented it, the Greeks banned it, the Hindus worshiped it, and the Church used it to fend off heretics. Now, as Y2K fever rages, it threatens a technological apocalypse. For centuries the power of zero savored of the demonic; once harnessed, it became the most important tool in mathematics. For zero, infinity's twin, is not like other numbers. It is both nothing and everything.

In Zero science journalist Charles Seife follows this innocent-looking number from its birth as an Eastern philosophical concept to its struggle for acceptance in Europe, its rise and transcendence in the West, and its ever-present threat to modern physics. Here are the legendary thinkers--from Pythagoras to Newton to Heisenberg, from the Kabalists to today's astrophysicists--who have tried to understand it and whose clashes shook the foundations of philosophy, science, mathematics, and religion. Zero has pitted East against West and faith against reason, and its intransigence persists in the dark core of a black hole and the brilliant flash of the Big Bang. Today, zero lies at the heart of one of the biggest scientific controversies of all time, the quest for a theory of everything.

Readers of Fermat's Enigma, The Man Who Loved Only Numbers, Seeing and Believing, and Longitudewill find the revealingly illustrated Zero freshly informative, easy to understand, and--infinitely--fascinating.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

The seemingly impossible Zen task--writing a book about nothing--has a loophole: people have been chatting, learning, and even fighting about nothing for millennia. Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea, by noted science writer Charles Seife, starts with the story of a modern battleship stopped dead in the water by a loose zero, then rewinds back to several hundred years BCE. Some empty-headed genius improved the traditional Eastern counting methods immeasurably by adding zero as a placeholder, which allowed the genesis of our still-used decimal system. It's all been uphill from there, but Seife is enthusiastic about his subject; his synthesis of math, history, and anthropology seduces the reader into a new fascination with the most troubling number.

Why did the Church reject the use of zero? How did mystics of all stripes get bent out of shape over it? Is it true that science as we know it depends on this mysterious round digit? Zero opens up these questions and lets us explore the answers and their ramifications for our oh-so-modern lives. Seife has fun with his format, too, starting with chapter 0 and finishing with an appendix titled "Make Your Own Wormhole Time Machine." (Warning: don't get your hopes up too much.) There are enough graphs and equations to scare off serious numerophobes, but the real story is in the interactions between artists, scientists, mathematicians, religious and political leaders, and the rest of us--it seems we really do have nothing in common. --Rob Lightner

About the Author:

Charles Seife is the author of five previous books, including Proofiness and Zero, which won the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for first nonfiction and was a New York Times notable book. He has written for a wide variety of publications, including The New York Times, Wired, New Scientist, Science, Scientific American, and The Economist. He is a professor of journalism at New York University and lives in New York City.

 

 

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Buy New View Book

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.

Destination, Rates & Speeds

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd, United Kingdom (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, United Kingdom, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New edition. 214 x 134 mm. Language: N/A. Brand New Book. Bookseller Inventory # AA69780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 12.42
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd, United Kingdom (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Paperback Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, United Kingdom, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New edition. 214 x 134 mm. Language: N/A. Brand New Book. Bookseller Inventory # AA69780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 12.62
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Seife, Charles Author
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Quantity Available: 5
Seller
GreatBookPrices
(Columbia, MD, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # 1389784-n

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 9.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 2.64
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Softcover Quantity Available: 20
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd. Book Condition: New. 2000. New edition. Paperback. . . . . . Over 350,000 customers served online!. Bookseller Inventory # V9780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 15.89
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From Ireland to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Paperback Quantity Available: 6
Seller
The Monster Bookshop
(Llandre, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. BRAND NEW ** SUPER FAST SHIPPING FROM UK WAREHOUSE ** 30 DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000220357

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 15.08
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.48
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Softcover Quantity Available: 20
Seller
Kennys Bookstore
(Olney, MD, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd. Book Condition: New. 2000. New edition. Paperback. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland . Bookseller Inventory # V9780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 17.00
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Softcover Quantity Available: 5
Seller
English-Book-Service - A Fine Choice
(Waldshut-Tiengen, Germany)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, 2000. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # EA9780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 13.53
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.83
From Germany to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Paperback Quantity Available: 5
Seller
Green Books
(Wicklow, Ireland)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New Book. Shipping: Once your order has been confirmed and payment received, your order will then be processed. The book will be located by our staff, packaged and despatched to you as quickly as possible. From time to time, items get mislaid en route. If your item fails to arrive, please contact us first. We will endeavour to trace the item for you and where necessary, replace or refund the item. Please do not leave negative feedback without contacting us first. All orders will be dispatched within two working days. If you have any quesions please contact us. Bookseller Inventory # V9780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 12.51
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 5.49
From Ireland to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller
ExtremelyReliable
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0285635948

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 16.01
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Seife, Charles Author
Published by Souvenir Press Ltd (2000)
ISBN 10: 0285635948 ISBN 13: 9780285635944
New Quantity Available: 20
Seller
Books2Anywhere
(Swindon, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Souvenir Press Ltd, 2000. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # BB-9780285635944

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 7.94
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 14.04
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book