Cover image for 100 essential things you didn't know you didn't know about math and the arts
Title:
100 essential things you didn't know you didn't know about math and the arts

100 essential things you didn't know you didn't know about maths and the arts

One hundred essential things you didn't know you didn't know about math and the arts

Hundred essential things you didn't know you didn't know about math and the arts
Author:
Barrow, John D., 1952- author.
ISBN:
9780393246551
Edition:
First American edition.
Physical Description:
xiv, 301 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
General Note:
First published by Bodley Head in 2014 under the title 100 essential things you didn't know you didn't know about maths and the arts.
Abstract:
"At first glance, the worlds of math and the arts might not seem like comfortable neighbors. But as mathematician John D. Barrow points out, they have a strong and natural affinity--after all, math is the study of all patterns, and the world of the arts is rich with pattern. Barrow whisks us through 100 thought-provoking and often whimsical intersections between math and many arts, from the golden ratios of Mondrian's rectangles and the curious fractal-like nature of Pollock's drip paintings to ballerinas' gravity-defying leaps and the next generation of monkeys on typewriters tackling Shakespeare"--Dust jacket flap.
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Book 700.105 BARROW Adult Reading Level Non-fiction
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Summary

Summary

At first glance, the worlds of math and the arts might not seem like comfortable neighbors. But as mathematician John D. Barrow points out, they have a strong and natural affinity--after all, math is the study of all patterns, and the world of the arts is rich with pattern. Barrow whisks us through 100 thought-provoking and often whimsical intersections between math and many arts, from the golden ratios of Mondrian's rectangles and the curious fractal-like nature of Pollock's drip paintings to ballerinas' gravity-defying leaps and the next generation of monkeys on typewriters tackling Shakespeare. For those of us with our feet planted more firmly on the ground, Barrow also wields everyday equations to reveal how many guards are needed in an art gallery or where you should stand to look at sculptures. From music and drama to literature and the visual arts, Barrow's witty and accessible observations are sure to spark the imaginations of math nerds and art aficionados alike.


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Cosmologist, theoretical physicist, and mathematician Barrow (mathematical sciences, Cambridge Univ.) provides an intriguing miscellany of short essays on various mathematical topics. The title promises that they will be, in some way, about the relationship of mathematics and the arts. In truth, while the entries include some examples that are squarely on target, others are fascinating but not really about the arts. An example of the first kind is a chapter that considers the fractal nature of Jackson Pollack's paintings. On the other side is a piece on how the days of the week came to be so named and how their order was decided. While there is no systematic development or attempt at instruction, throughout the material are ideas that will inspire one to further investigation. As such, the book will be a strong reference for classroom teachers interested in adding a touch of humor or motivation to their regular lesson plans. Composed of 100 short, two- or three-page chapters, this is a good book to dip into when stuck on a queue or otherwise "on hold." VERDICT Well written and easy to read but more suited for personal rather than library collections.-Harold D. Shane, Mathematics Emeritus, Baruch Coll. Lib., CUNY (c) Copyright 2015. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Table of Contents

Prefacep. xiii
1 The Art of Mathematicsp. 1
2 How Many Guards Does an Art Gallery Need?p. 4
3 Aspects of Aspect Ratiosp. 8
4 Vickrey Auctionsp. 11
5 How to Sing in Tunep. 13
6 The Grand Jetép. 15
7 Impossible Beliefsp. 17
8 Xerography û Déjà Vu All Over Againp. 19
9 Making Pages Look Nicep. 22
10 The Sound of Silencep. 25
11 A Most Unusual Cake Recipep. 28
12 Designing Roller Coastersp. 31
13 The Beginning of the Universe Live on TVp. 35
14 Coping with Stressp. 38
15 Art Is Criticalp. 40
16 Culinary Artsp. 42
17 Curved Trianglesp. 45
18 The Days of the Weekp. 49
19 The Case for Procrastinationp. 52
20 Diamonds Are Foreverp. 54
21 How Do You Doodle?p. 57
22 Why Are Eggs Egg-Shaped?p. 59
23 The El Greco Effectp. 62
24 Eurekap. 64
25 What the Eye Tells the Brainp. 67
26 Why the Flag of Nepal Is Uniquep. 70
27 The Indian Rope Trickp. 73
28 An Image That Defeats the Eyep. 76
29 It's Friday the Thirteenth Againp. 79
30 Strip Friezesp. 82
31 The Gherkinp. 86
32 Hedging Your Betsp. 89
33 Infinity at the Theaterp. 91
34 Shedding Light on (and with) the Golden Ratiop. 92
35 Magic Squaresp. 94
36 Mondrian's Golden Rectanglesp. 97
37 Monkey Business with Tilesp. 100
38 Pleasing Soundsp. 103
39 New Tiles from Oldp. 106
40 The Nine-Degree Solutionp. 108
41 Paper Sizes and a Book in the Handp. 111
42 Penny Blacks and Penny Redsp. 114
43 Prime Time Cyclesp. 119
44 If You Can't Measure It, Why Not?p. 122
45 The Art of Nebulaep. 124
46 Reverse Auctions: Going Backward for Christmasp. 127
47 Ritual Geometry for the Godsp. 130
48 Prize Rosettesp. 133
49 Getting a Handle on Water Music: Singing in the Showerp. 135
50 Sizing Up Picturesp. 137
51 Triquetrap. 140
52 Let It Snow, Let It Snow Let It Snowp. 143
53 Some Perils of Picturesp. 146
54 Drinking with Socratesp. 149
55 Strange Formulaep. 151
56 Stylometry: Mathematics Rules the Wavesp. 155
57 Getting It Togetherp. 158
58 When Time Has to Reckon with Spacep. 160
59 How to Watch TVp. 163
60 Curvaceous Vase Profilesp. 165
61 All the Wallpapers in the Universep. 168
62 The Art of Warp. 171
63 Shattering Wineglassesp. 174
64 Let the Light Shine Inp. 176
65 Special Trianglesp. 178
66 Gnomons Are Goldenp. 180
67 The Upside-down World of Scott Kimp. 182
68 How Many Words Did Shakespeare Know?p. 184
69 The Strange and Wonderful Law of First Digitsp. 188
70 Organ Donor Preferencesp. 192
71 Elliptical Whispering Galleriesp. 194
72 The Tunnel of Eupalinosp. 196
73 A Time-and-Motion Study of the Great Pyramidp. 200
74 Picking Out Tigers in the Bushesp. 203
75 The Arc of the Second Lawp. 205
76 On a Clear Day ...p. 207
77 Salvador Dali and the Fourth Dimensionp. 209
78 The Sound of Musicp. 212
79 Chernoff's Facesp. 214
80 The Man from Undergroundp. 216
81 Mobius and His Bandp. 219
82 The Bells, the Bellsp. 222
83 Following the Herdp. 225
84 Finger Countingp. 229
85 The Other Newton's Hymn to the Infinitep. 231
86 Charles Dickens Was No Average Man; Florence Nightingale No Average Womanp. 234
87 Markov's Literary Chainsp. 236
88 From Free Will to the Russian Electionsp. 239
89 Playing with Supreme Beingsp. 242
90 The Drawbacks of Being a Know-allp. 244
91 Watching Paint Crackp. 245
92 Pop Music's Magic Equationp. 248
93 Random Artp. 251
94 Jack the Dripperp. 255
95 The Bridge of Stringsp. 260
96 Lacing Problemsp. 264
97 Where to Stand to Look at Statuesp. 267
98 The Hotel Infinityp. 270
99 The Color of Musicp. 273
100 Shakespeare's Monkeys: The New Generationp. 276
Notesp. 281