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# The Unfinished Game: Pascal, Fermat, and the Seventeenth-Century Letter that Made the World Modern

Before the mid-seventeenth century, scholars generally agreed that it was impossible to predict something by calculating mathematical outcomes. One simply could not put a numerical value on the likelihood that a particular event would occur. Even the outcome of something as simple as a dice roll or the likelihood of showers instead of sunshine was thought to lie in the rea
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Hardcover, 208 pages

Published
September 23rd 2008
by Basic Books
(first published January 1st 2008)

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## Community Reviews

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In the case of _The Unfinished Game_, Keith Devlin's little riff on the 17th century exchange between Blaise Pascal and Pierre de Fermat and its role in the history of risk management, the answer is absolutely not.

I did not fail to find anything of value in this book. I read it because I've become increasingly interested as an educator in the history of math, especially ...more

In a nutshell, the book des ...more

Jun 26, 2009
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
marked it as decided-not-to-read

I thought this would be great ... but it turned out to not be that exciting. At least, the first couple chapters weren't.

Jan 28, 2009
Joel Patton
is currently reading it

The bios seem a little thin, and I've already run across a chunk of more-or-less repeated text.

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Dr. Keith Devlin is a co-founder and Executive Director of the university's H-STAR institute, a Consulting Professor in the Department of Mathematics, a co-founder of the Stanford Media X research network, and a Senior Researcher at CSLI. He is a World Economic Forum Fellow and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. His current research is focused on the use of differ
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More about Keith J. Devlin...
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