In pursuit of the unknown : 17 equations that changed the world
 Responsibility
 Ian Stewart.
 Language
 English.
 Publication
 New York : Basic Books, 2013.
 Physical description
 x, 342 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm
Access
Creators/Contributors
 Author/Creator
 Stewart, Ian, 1945
Contents/Summary
 Bibliography
 Includes bibliographical references (p. [321]330) and index.
 Contents

 Why equations?
 The squaw on the hippopotamus: Pythagoras's theorem
 Shortening the proceedings: logarithms
 Ghosts of departed quantities: calculus
 The system of the world: Newton's law of gravity
 Portent of the ideal world: the square root of minus one
 Much ado about knotting: Euler's formula for polyhedra
 Patterns of chance: normal distribution
 Good vibrations: wave equation
 Ripples and blips: Fourier transform
 The ascent of humanity: NavierStokes equation
 Waves in the ether: Maxwell's equations
 Law and disorder: second law of thermodynamics
 One thing is absolute: relativity
 Quantum weirdness: Schrödinger's equation
 Codes, communications, and computers: information theory
 The imbalance of nature: chaos theory
 The Midas formula: BlackScholes equation
 Where next?
 Publisher's Summary
 Most people are familiar with history's great equations: Newton's Law of Gravity, for instance, or Einstein's theory of relativity. But the way these mathematical breakthroughs have contributed to human progress is seldom appreciated. In In Pursuit of the Unknown, celebrated mathematician Ian Stewart untangles the roots of our most important mathematical statements to show that equations have long been a driving force behind nearly every aspect of our lives. Using seventeen of our most crucial equationsincluding the Wave Equation that allowed engineers to measure a building's response to earthquakes, saving countless lives, and the BlackScholes model, used by bankers to track the price of financial derivatives over timeStewart illustrates that many of the advances we now take for granted were made possible by mathematical discoveries. An approachable, lively, and informative guide to the mathematical building blocks of modern life, In Pursuit of the Unknown is a penetrating exploration of how we have also used equations to make sense of, and in turn influence, our world.
(source: Nielsen Book Data)
Bibliographic information
 Publication date
 2013
 Title Variation
 17 equations that changed the world
 ISBN
 9780465085989 (paperback)
 0465085989 (paperback)
 9780465029730 (hardcover)
 0465029736 (hardcover)
 9780465029747 (ebook)
 0465029744 (ebook)