I marked this as read because I got from the first page to the last. I will read it a couple of more times in the next few months. The book is writtenI marked this as read because I got from the first page to the last. I will read it a couple of more times in the next few months. The book is written on several different levels. one is an autobiography of a very determined, passionate, somewhat egotistical mathematical prodigy. It is an interesting, if sometimes overbearing story. Another level is an introduction to the layman of what real mathematicians do. (My use of layman is intentional.) Most importantly, I think Frenkel is trying to show that a non-mathematician, with some (lots of) work, can read and appreciate mathematics like a non-musician can listen to and appreciate a fine symphony. The analogy is mine. Surprisingly Frenkel never mentions music although he makes frequent reference to the literary, and visual arts.
An interesting aside: Andre Weil, a very significant 20th century mathematician was the brother of Simone Weil a significant 20th century mystic. ...more
A thought; even if the odds are a billion to one and the draw only happens once a year, that doesn't mean it wNothing new, but then it is an old book.
A thought; even if the odds are a billion to one and the draw only happens once a year, that doesn't mean it will take a billion years for it to happen. It could happen tomorrow and not again for a billion years or it could happen tomorrow and again a year from tomorrow and not happen for the next 2 billion years or it could not happen once for the next ten billion years. It means in a billion, billion years it would be more likely to happen a billion times than any other number of times.
Roll a die six times and see if 2 comes up once. Roll it 36 times and see if it comes up 6 times, etc.
If a non-gambler walks up to a roulette table during a run of reds and leaves before the run is over he could be expected to think that only red comes up. Never experiencing a balancing (?) run of blacks.
I thought Borel was headed to a new presentation of "intelligent design" but he never went that direction. ...more
Worth reading for Catholics, non-Catholic believers and non-believers. A good reminder that: A man's worth is not what he contributes to the economy.Worth reading for Catholics, non-Catholic believers and non-believers. A good reminder that: A man's worth is not what he contributes to the economy. Justice is a necessary condition of charity. You cannot be charitable until you are just. The "Market" is a human arrangement not divine. Profit is a means not an end.
The style is very much like Augustine, Aquinas, second generation Marxists and some American conservatives who build their legitimacy on reference to canonical texts, Scripture, Marx, the Founding Fathers. Benedict, of course references the New Testament, also a strong reference to Paul VI and Vatican II.
The Pope again affirms the value (sanctity) of human life, including the unborn, with which I heartily agree, and the value of the "traditional family" which I think may be culturally dependent, that we will hear loud and strong from the catholic right.
His critique of the free market economy from "...there is no doubt that foreign workers, despite any difficulties concerning integration, make a significant contribution to the economic development of the host country through their labor, besides that which they make to their country of origin through the money they send home. Obviously, these labourers cannot be considered as a commodity or a mere workforce." to "It is good for people to realize that purchasing is always a moral - and not simply an economic - act." to his call for a stronger UN and International Labor Organization, that we probably won't hear much about. ...more