*José Ferreirós*

- Published in print:
- 2015
- Published Online:
- October 2017
- ISBN:
- 9780691167510
- eISBN:
- 9781400874002
- Item type:
- book

- Publisher:
- Princeton University Press
- DOI:
- 10.23943/princeton/9780691167510.001.0001
- Subject:
- Mathematics, Logic / Computer Science / Mathematical Philosophy

This book presents a new approach to the epistemology of mathematics by viewing mathematics as a human activity whose knowledge is intimately linked with practice. Charting an exciting new direction ...
More

This book presents a new approach to the epistemology of mathematics by viewing mathematics as a human activity whose knowledge is intimately linked with practice. Charting an exciting new direction in the philosophy of mathematics, the book uses the crucial idea of a continuum to provide an account of the development of mathematical knowledge that reflects the actual experience of doing math and makes sense of the perceived objectivity of mathematical results. Describing a historically oriented, agent-based philosophy of mathematics, the book shows how the mathematical tradition evolved from Euclidean geometry to the real numbers and set-theoretic structures. It argues for the need to take into account a whole web of mathematical and other practices that are learned and linked by agents, and whose interplay acts as a constraint. It demonstrates how advanced mathematics, far from being a priori, is based on hypotheses, in contrast to elementary math, which has strong cognitive and practical roots and therefore enjoys certainty. Offering a wealth of philosophical and historical insights, the book challenges us to rethink some of our most basic assumptions about mathematics, its objectivity, and its relationship to culture and science.Less

This book presents a new approach to the epistemology of mathematics by viewing mathematics as a human activity whose knowledge is intimately linked with practice. Charting an exciting new direction in the philosophy of mathematics, the book uses the crucial idea of a continuum to provide an account of the development of mathematical knowledge that reflects the actual experience of doing math and makes sense of the perceived objectivity of mathematical results. Describing a historically oriented, agent-based philosophy of mathematics, the book shows how the mathematical tradition evolved from Euclidean geometry to the real numbers and set-theoretic structures. It argues for the need to take into account a whole web of mathematical and other practices that are learned and linked by agents, and whose interplay acts as a constraint. It demonstrates how advanced mathematics, far from being a priori, is based on hypotheses, in contrast to elementary math, which has strong cognitive and practical roots and therefore enjoys certainty. Offering a wealth of philosophical and historical insights, the book challenges us to rethink some of our most basic assumptions about mathematics, its objectivity, and its relationship to culture and science.

*Michael Harris*

- Published in print:
- 2017
- Published Online:
- May 2018
- ISBN:
- 9780691175836
- eISBN:
- 9781400885527
- Item type:
- book

- Publisher:
- Princeton University Press
- DOI:
- 10.23943/princeton/9780691175836.001.0001
- Subject:
- Mathematics, Logic / Computer Science / Mathematical Philosophy

What do pure mathematicians do, and why do they do it? Looking beyond the conventional answers, this book offers an eclectic panorama of the lives and values and hopes and fears of mathematicians in ...
More

What do pure mathematicians do, and why do they do it? Looking beyond the conventional answers, this book offers an eclectic panorama of the lives and values and hopes and fears of mathematicians in the twenty-first century, assembling material from a startlingly diverse assortment of scholarly, journalistic, and pop culture sources. Drawing on the author's personal experiences as well as the thoughts and opinions of mathematicians from Archimedes and Omar Khayyám to such contemporary giants as Alexander Grothendieck and Robert Langlands, the book reveals the charisma and romance of mathematics as well as its darker side. In this portrait of mathematics as a community united around a set of common intellectual, ethical, and existential challenges, the book touches on a wide variety of questions, such as: Are mathematicians to blame for the 2008 financial crisis? How can we talk about the ideas we were born too soon to understand? And how should you react if you are asked to explain number theory at a dinner party? The book takes readers on an unapologetic guided tour of the mathematical life, from the philosophy and sociology of mathematics to its reflections in film and popular music, with detours through the mathematical and mystical traditions of Russia, India, medieval Islam, the Bronx, and beyond.Less

What do pure mathematicians do, and why do they do it? Looking beyond the conventional answers, this book offers an eclectic panorama of the lives and values and hopes and fears of mathematicians in the twenty-first century, assembling material from a startlingly diverse assortment of scholarly, journalistic, and pop culture sources. Drawing on the author's personal experiences as well as the thoughts and opinions of mathematicians from Archimedes and Omar Khayyám to such contemporary giants as Alexander Grothendieck and Robert Langlands, the book reveals the charisma and romance of mathematics as well as its darker side. In this portrait of mathematics as a community united around a set of common intellectual, ethical, and existential challenges, the book touches on a wide variety of questions, such as: Are mathematicians to blame for the 2008 financial crisis? How can we talk about the ideas we were born too soon to understand? And how should you react if you are asked to explain number theory at a dinner party? The book takes readers on an unapologetic guided tour of the mathematical life, from the philosophy and sociology of mathematics to its reflections in film and popular music, with detours through the mathematical and mystical traditions of Russia, India, medieval Islam, the Bronx, and beyond.

*João P. Hespanha*

- Published in print:
- 2017
- Published Online:
- May 2018
- ISBN:
- 9780691175218
- eISBN:
- 9781400885442
- Item type:
- book

- Publisher:
- Princeton University Press
- DOI:
- 10.23943/princeton/9780691175218.001.0001
- Subject:
- Mathematics, Logic / Computer Science / Mathematical Philosophy

This book is aimed at students interested in using game theory as a design methodology for solving problems in engineering and computer science. The book shows that such design challenges can be ...
More

This book is aimed at students interested in using game theory as a design methodology for solving problems in engineering and computer science. The book shows that such design challenges can be analyzed through game theoretical perspectives that help to pinpoint each problem's essence: Who are the players? What are their goals? Will the solution to “the game” solve the original design problem? Using the fundamentals of game theory, the book explores these issues and more. The use of game theory in technology design is a recent development arising from the intrinsic limitations of classical optimization-based designs. In optimization, one attempts to find values for parameters that minimize suitably defined criteria—such as monetary cost, energy consumption, or heat generated. However, in most engineering applications, there is always some uncertainty as to how the selected parameters will affect the final objective. Through a sequential and easy-to-understand discussion, the book examines how to make sure that the selection leads to acceptable performance, even in the presence of uncertainty—the unforgiving variable that can wreck engineering designs. The book looks at such standard topics as zero-sum, non-zero-sum, and dynamic games and includes a MATLAB guide to coding. This book offers students a fresh way of approaching engineering and computer science applications.Less

This book is aimed at students interested in using game theory as a design methodology for solving problems in engineering and computer science. The book shows that such design challenges can be analyzed through game theoretical perspectives that help to pinpoint each problem's essence: Who are the players? What are their goals? Will the solution to “the game” solve the original design problem? Using the fundamentals of game theory, the book explores these issues and more. The use of game theory in technology design is a recent development arising from the intrinsic limitations of classical optimization-based designs. In optimization, one attempts to find values for parameters that minimize suitably defined criteria—such as monetary cost, energy consumption, or heat generated. However, in most engineering applications, there is always some uncertainty as to how the selected parameters will affect the final objective. Through a sequential and easy-to-understand discussion, the book examines how to make sure that the selection leads to acceptable performance, even in the presence of uncertainty—the unforgiving variable that can wreck engineering designs. The book looks at such standard topics as zero-sum, non-zero-sum, and dynamic games and includes a MATLAB guide to coding. This book offers students a fresh way of approaching engineering and computer science applications.