Good Math: the Book

Jan 23 2013 Published by under Book

Ladies and Gentlemen! I've got a very big announcement!

mcmath At long last, I've written a book based on this blog. It's being published by the Pragmatic Bookshelf. The way that the Prags work, you can pre-order the book now, and immediately download the current draft. As I update the rest of the book, you'll get all of the updates, up to the final printed version of the book.

I'm very proud of this thing. It's the result of a whole lot of work, and I think it should be a lot of fun for mathematically curious folks to read.

For this book, I've collected up a bunch of my favorite posts from the history of this blog, and revised/rewritten them in a much more polished, coherent form. The book includes:

  1. Numbers: some basic number theory, what numbers mean, how they're constructed.
  2. Funny numbers: a collection of strange but interesting numbers: 0, e, i, ...
  3. Writing Numbers: Roman numerals, egyptian fractions, continued fractions, ...
  4. Logic: first order predicate logic, proofs, temporal logic, and prolog.
  5. Set theory
  6. Computation and computing machines

Aside from being a fun read, buying it will support Scientopia. From the time that Scientopia got started, I've been paying all of the hosting bills. That's about $250 a month, for the last three years. Making some money from this book will make it possible for me to continue supporting it, and maybe even pay for some help with technical support!

Not to mention the fact that if this book does well, there will be more volumes down the line. In particular, I've got my eye on doing some stuff about the math of programming: type theory, category theory, algebraic data structures, etc.

Enjoy!

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  • Great! I've always wanted some book with general knowledge about maths to be able to start on the right foot reading something like SICP. Just bought the beta 8)

  • Bought the combo pack. Your blog focuses on all the math I wish I knew already (logics, category theory, model theory). It will be exciting to find out the exact limits of my tiny brain.

  • I've been a Pragmatic Bookshelf customer for a long time and their books are always great! I purchased your book and it lead me to your blog! I look forward to learning from you! :)

  • Shecky R says:

    This looks great... especially as an educational endeavor. The one additional component I'd love to see, as a matter of entertainment, is a chapter on 'math crankery' -- you've run so many entertaining posts on it over the yrs. (...and it too can be educational!).

    • MarkCC says:

      I considered that. The problem with doing that is that it tends to *really* aggravate the cranks. When they're being mocked on my blog, it's no big deal. But if we publish a book, then it's upping the ante - it raises the profile of my mockery, *and* it turns it from a hobby thing into something that I make money from. Those two together come with a hefty risk of some jackass suing me and my publisher.

      I don't think that my crankery-mocking posts are important enough to take a risk publishing.

  • Janne says:

    Got it. Now, get working on those missing bits about computability :)

  • Rajesh Parameswaran says:

    Got the eBook since shipping cost to India is pretty high. Really wanted to have a print copy..for now kindle would do. Thanks for the book.

  • lily says:

    Sweet!
    I hope you eventually publish a book about cranks a'la Underwood Dudley
    I know this blog is takes a lighthearted/cynical view but the psychology is actually very interesting.

  • Christian Nielsen says:

    I would instantly buy a book about category theory if it is written by you! Your explanations of basic category theoretic concepts are extremely clear! Thanks for a great blog and congratulations with your book! :-)