From Library Journal This short, delightful book is essential reading for those educated in the liberal and fine arts who have never had the opportunity to appreciate the beauty of mathematics and physics. Osserman, a Stanford University professor who developed a math and physics course for humanities majors, manages to convey some of the fascination of these two fields without getting involved in technical details and without talking down to his audience. His seamless development leads the reader almost effortlessly from the early efforts of the ancients to measure the earth through the open problems in modern cosmology. Strongly recommended.Harold D. Shane, Baruch Coll., CUNYCopyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. Product Description Using illustrations and a minimum of mathematical formulas, a narrative journeys from ancient Greece to recent discoveries about background radiation in space to illuminate the interplay between mathematical theory and attempts to unlock the secrets of the universe From Booklist With nary an equation to confuse, a Stanford math professor clearly distills for a general readership the seminal ideas behind the notion that space has curvature and is not flat as ordinary humans perceive it. Osserman has been working up to this book through his classes for humanities majors, and the result is as lucid, comprehensible, and engaging as will be found in this category of scientific writing. He begins with ancient measurements of the earth, in which Euclid's geometry figures critically, but reaches cruising speed in his presentations of the nineteenth-century German mathematicians Carl Friedrich Gauss and Georg Friedrich Riemann. They are the best-known inventors of non-Euclidean geometry, whose commonest concept is that not all angles of all triangles add up to 180; the sum depends on the curvature of the surface in question. The ramifications cascade from there, into the shape of the retroverse, as the author tags our celestial view back into time and on toward invented abstract multidimensional shapes dubbed manifolds. Libraries know the popularity of sagas on observational astronomy and particle physics, and this examination of the mathematical component, specifically the species of geometry, fits well within their compass. A warm invitation to the aesthetics of math on the largest scale. Gilbert Taylor Review Osserman's mathematical exploration of the universe doesn't pack in the usual math formulas: instead it explores the math vision and imagination which have prompted scientific discoveries and explanations. Enjoy a historical probe of the evolution of math concepts and the originators of mathematical theory. -- Midwest Book Review
You may return most new, unopened items within 30 days of delivery for a full refund. We'll also pay the return shipping costs if the return is a result of our error (you received an incorrect or defective item, etc.).
You should expect to receive your refund within four weeks of giving your package to the return shipper, however, in many cases you will receive a refund more quickly. This time period includes the transit time for us to receive your return from the shipper (5 to 10 business days), the time it takes us to process your return once we receive it (3 to 5 business days), and the time it takes your bank to process our refund request (5 to 10 business days).
If you need to return an item, simply login to your account, view the order using the "Complete Orders" link under the My Account menu and click the Return Item(s) button. We'll notify you via e-mail of your refund once we've received and processed the returned item.
We can ship to virtually any address in the world. Note that there are restrictions on some products, and some products cannot be shipped to international destinations.
When you place an order, we will estimate shipping and delivery dates for you based on the availability of your items and the shipping options you choose. Depending on the shipping provider you choose, shipping date estimates may appear on the shipping quotes page.
Please also note that the shipping rates for many items we sell are weight-based. The weight of any such item can be found on its detail page. To reflect the policies of the shipping companies we use, all weights will be rounded up to the next full pound.