How Mathematics Can Take Us to the Edge of the Unknown
From the New Books Network Podcast
There are very few math books that merit the adjective “charming” but Mage Merlin’s Unsolved Mathematical Mysteries (MIT Press, 2020) is one of them. Satyan Devadoss and Matt Harvey have chosen a truly unique, creative and charming way to acquaint readers with some of the unsolved problems of mathematics. Some are classic, such as the Goldbach Conjecture, some are fairly well known, such as the Collatz Conjecture. Others are less well known but no less fascinating—and all are intriguing and both enjoyable and tantalizing to contemplate. The authors have woven the problems into a coherent story, and I think you’ll enjoy hearing—and reading—both the story and the associated problems.
Satyan Linus Devadoss is the Fletcher Jones Professor of Applied Mathematics and Professor of Computer Science at the University of San Diego. A recipient of two national teaching awards, he has published on topics ranging from origami and cartography to phylogenetics and particle collisions.
Matthew Harvey is Professor of Mathematics at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise and the author of the textbook Geometry Illuminated.