Why Beauty is Truth by Ian Stewart
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Why Beauty is Truth
By Ian Stewart

Why Beauty is Truth

A History of Symmetry 1st Trade edition

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Format: Paperback

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Why Beauty is Truth by Ian Stewart

Book Awards

  • Shortlisted for Royal Society Prize for Science Books: General Prize 2008.

Book Description

At the heart of relativity theory, quantum mechanics, string theory, and much of modern cosmology lies one concept: symmetry. In Why Beauty Is Truth, world-famous mathematician Ian Stewart narrates the history of the emergence of this remarkable area of study. Stewart introduces us to such characters as the Renaissance Italian genius, rogue, scholar, and gambler Girolamo Cardano, who stole the modern method of solving cubic equations and published it in the first important book on algebra, and the young revolutionary Evariste Galois, who refashioned the whole of mathematics and founded the field of group theory only to die in a pointless duel over a woman before his work was published. Stewart also explores the strange numerology of real mathematics, in which particular numbers have unique and unpredictable properties related to symmetry. He shows how Wilhelm Killing discovered "Lie groups" with 14, 52, 78, 133, and 248 dimensions-groups whose very existence is a profound puzzle. Finally, Stewart describes the world beyond superstrings: the "octonionic" symmetries that may explain the very existence of the universe.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780465082377
ISBN-10: 0465082378
Format: Paperback
(204mm x 135mm x 21mm)
Pages: 304
Imprint: Basic Books
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
Publish Date: 1-May-2008
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions...


Books By Author Ian Stewart

Infinity by Ian Stewart Infinity, Paperback (March 2017)

Ian Stewart considers the concept of infinity and the profound role it plays in mathematics, logic, physics, cosmology, and philosophy. He shows that working with infinity is not just an abstract, intellectual exercise, and analyses its important practical everyday applications.

» View all books by Ian Stewart

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Author Biography - Ian Stewart

Ian Stewart is Professor of Mathematics at the University of Warwick and is well known for his writing and broadcasting about mathematics for nonspecialists. He has written over 140 research papers on such subjects as symmetry in dynamics, pattern formation, chaos, and mathematical biology, as well as numerous popular books, including Letters to a Young Mathematician, Does God Play Dice?, What Shape Is a Snowflake?, Nature's Numbers, The Annotated Flatland, and Flatterland. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001. He lives in Coventry, England.

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