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Ancient Puzzles: Classic Brainteasers and Other Timeless Mathematical Games of the Last Ten Centuries

3.9  ·  Rating details ·  21 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Match wits with the great minds of the world's greatest civilizations in this fascinating collection of ancient conundrums, brainteasers, and mind-benders.

- What do prehistoric bone markings and modern computer science have in common?
- What is the mystery of pi that stumped generations of ancient mathematicians?
- What are the ancient puzzle origins of popular games such
...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published November 1st 1993 by Bantam
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(showing 1-46)
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Matthew
Apr 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Strong 3.5 stars for anyone interested in the development of mathematical concepts through history. From the first pages I was fascinated by some of the trivia (like why we use the word "check" in banking, why many clocks use IIII instead of IV, or how to translate numbers into binary code, etc.). The heart of this book, though, is to celebrate where ideas were first considered and solved. Reading this book will give you a new appreciation for Egypt and China's contribution (and make you feel a ...more
Dokusha
Aug 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dies ist ein Buch über einige klassische mathematische Rätsel und Objekte sowie die Geschichte ihrer Entstehung oder Entdeckung. Vieles, was berühmten europäischen Mathematikern der Neuzeit zugeschrieben wird, läßt sich bereits in alten chinesischen Quellen nachweisen, wie zum Beispiel das Pascalsche Dreieck oder die Fibonacci-Zahlen.
Über diese Themen, daneben auch über magische Quadrate und Primzahlen wie auch Graphen lernt man viel Erstaunliches, von dem das eine oder andere auch dem neu sein
...more
LemmiSchmoeker
Jul 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Olivastro versteht es, eine Begeisterung für Mathematik und mathematische Spielereien zu vermitteln. Der Titel kommt – natürlich – vom Pascal'schen Dreieck, das die Chinesen schon ein paar Tausend Jahre vor Pascal entdeckt hatten. In dieser Art werden viele, viele Parallelen und Anleihen vorgestellt und meist ein Spiel, mit dem eine Systematik veranschaulicht werden kann. Das macht Spaß, und ein Lerneffekt stellt sich ganz nebenbei ein. Seltsam mutet nur die Faszination des Verfassers für den „I ...more
Jenny
Jun 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed the section dedicated to Egyptian mathematics. It even explains to the reader how the Egyptians approached solving problems by using multiplication and division (it is very different from our modern way of using these methods, but it's very fun to solve problems the Egyptian Way). I'd be very happy to reference this book in anything I compose.
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