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Stand-up mathematician and star of Festival of the Spoken Nerd, Matt Parker presents Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension -- a riotous journey through the possibilities of numbers, with audience participation - Cut pizzas in new and fairer ways! - Fit a 2p coin through an impossibly small hole! - Make a perfect regular pentagon by knotting a piece of paper! - Tie your shoes faster than ever before, saving literally seconds of your life! - Use those extra seconds to contemplate the diminishing returns of an exclamation-point at the end of every bullet-point! - Make a working computer out of dominoes! Maths is a game. This book can be cut, drawn in, folded into shapes and will even take you to the fourth dimension. So join stand-up mathematician Matt Parker on a journey through narcissistic numbers, optimal dating algorithms, at least two different kinds of infinity and more.
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Originally a maths teacher from Australia, Matt Parker now lives in Godalming in a house full of almost every retro video-game console ever made. He is fluent in binary and could write your name in a sequence of noughts and ones in seconds. He loves doing maths and stand-up, often simultaneously. When he's not working as the Public Engagement in Mathematics Fellow at Queen Mary University of London, he's performing in sold-out live comedy shows, spreading his love of maths via TV and radio, or converting photographs into Excel spreadsheets. He is the author of Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension.From School Library Journal:
Gr 8 Up—For readers who haven't balked at Stephen Hawkings's A Brief History of Time (Bantam, 1988) or Robert P. Crease and Alfred Scharff Goldhaber's The Quantum Moment (Norton, 2014), this sustained ramble through the thickets of mathematics offers similarly lucid but challenging insights into our universe's deeper patterns and principles. Building not on a chronological but a conceptual framework outlined in the opening chapter, "Zeroth Chapter," the author explores the historical evolution of mathematical tools, conjectures, and concepts from numbers and geometrical shapes to primes, knots, algorithms, multiple dimensions, computers from the Antikythera Mechanism on, probability, "ridiculous" (i.e., negative, transcendental, surreal, and the like) numbers, and infinities of diverse flavor. He adds lots of small diagrams and photos to illustrate his topics, but appends no index or, aside from follow-up comments on scattered posers, back matter. A stand-up comedian as well as a trained mathematician, Parker lightens the intellectual load considerably with zingers ("That's the problem with binary jokes: they either work or they don't") and everyday examples from bar bets to dating algorithms. Still, even confirmed math geeks will find this pleasurable but not casual reading.—John Peters, Children's Literature Consultant, New York City
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