Symmetry and the Monster: The Story of One of the Greatest Quests of Mathematics

3.71 avg rating
( 156 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780192807229: Symmetry and the Monster: The Story of One of the Greatest Quests of Mathematics

Mathematics is driven forward by the quest to solve a small number of major problems--the four most famous challenges being Fermat's Last Theorem, the Riemann Hypothesis, Poincaré's Conjecture, and the quest for the "Monster" of Symmetry. Now, in an exciting, fast-paced historical narrative ranging across two centuries, Mark Ronan takes us on an exhilarating tour of this final mathematical quest.
Ronan describes how the quest to understand symmetry really began with the tragic young genius Evariste Galois, who died at the age of 20 in a duel. Galois, who spent the night before he died frantically scribbling his unpublished discoveries, used symmetry to understand algebraic equations, and he discovered that there were building blocks or "atoms of symmetry." Most of these building blocks fit into a table, rather like the periodic table of elements, but mathematicians have found 26 exceptions. The biggest of these was dubbed "the Monster"--a giant snowflake in 196,884 dimensions. Ronan, who personally knows the individuals now working on this problem, reveals how the Monster was only dimly seen at first. As more and more mathematicians became involved, the Monster became clearer, and it was found to be not monstrous but a beautiful form that pointed out deep connections between symmetry, string theory, and the very fabric and form of the universe.
This story of discovery involves extraordinary characters, and Mark Ronan brings these people to life, vividly recreating the growing excitement of what became the biggest joint project ever in the field of mathematics. Vibrantly written, Symmetry and the Monster is a must-read for all fans of popular science--and especially readers of such books as Fermat's Last Theorem.

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

About the Author:


Mark Ronan is a Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a Visiting Professor of Mathematics at University College London.

Review:


"Remarkable contribution to the pop-math genre."--SIAM Review


"Succeeds in bringing to the fore an aspect of mathematics that some popularizers miss--that math is not a science of monuments, but a living tradition as vibrant as physics or ethics or law, one in which new monuments pop up weekly and old ones are retrofitted for purposes inconceivable to their creators."--Seed Magazine


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

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Mark Ronan
Published by Oxford University Press (2006)
ISBN 10: 0192807226 ISBN 13: 9780192807229
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Rumford, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Oxford University Press, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0192807226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 34.79
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

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

2.

Mark Ronan
Published by Oxford University Press, USA (2006)
ISBN 10: 0192807226 ISBN 13: 9780192807229
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Oxford University Press, USA, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0192807226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 31.50
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

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

3.

Ronan, Mark
Published by Oxford University Press (2006)
ISBN 10: 0192807226 ISBN 13: 9780192807229
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Oxford University Press, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110192807226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 38.21
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Ronan, Mark
Published by Oxford University Press
ISBN 10: 0192807226 ISBN 13: 9780192807229
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Cloud 9 Books
(Wellington, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Oxford University Press. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0192807226 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0036279

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 59.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 4.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds