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3 thoughts on “Littlewood's Miscellany

  1. Charles Daney Charles Daney says:

    Littlewood's Miscellany is a good choice to read along with G H Hardy's A Mathematician's Apology which I reviewed here That's not because it says anything than Hardy's book about the celebrated collaboration It doesn't But it does give a reasonable snapshot of the world of mathematics in the period roughly from 1910 to 1950But first let's get a few negative observations out of the way Littlewood begins almost immediately with this Anyone open to the idea of looking through a popular book on mathematics should be able to get on with this one I think that's overly optimistic In terms of the interest of people only casually curious about the nature of mathematics the Miscellany does not compare favorably with Hardy's Apology The latter is definitely a popular work in terms of both subject matter and technical level while the Miscellany is not Except for some catty gossip about academic life in England in the early decades of the 20th century and the people e g Bertrand Russell associated with it there's not much in the book to interest the general reader In all fairness I think that only people with a strong interest in mathematics will find much in the Miscellany to hold their attention And even that will be somewhat limited since contemporary mathematics is uite different from that of Littlewood's heydayAnother negative is that Littlewood is very candid in stating that a miscellany is a collection without a natural ordering relation In other words there's no common thread or theme running through the book not even some natural progression from one topic to the next Some chapters seem to be merely disparate comments that Littlewood may have jotted down on a scrap of paper or a diary page at random times Other chapters deal with nitty gritty details of mathematical topics that are probably only of minor interest to contemporary math lovers such as ballistics guns and stuff notations for extremely large numbers and an examination in excruciating detail of the astronomical data that led to the discovery of Neptune Notably lacking is any insight into the nature of Littlewood's collaboration with Hardy Littlewood has no to say about that than the latter didFor better or for worse contemporary mathematics is vastly different from the mathematics of Littlewood and his era The latter involved topics such as analysis properties of real and complex valued functions differential euations and algebraic structures such as groups rings and matrices Active areas of modern mathematics are things like category theory abstract algebraic geometry and higher dimensional geometric objects Littlewood's and Hardy's expertise was primarily in the mathematical analysis of their day and with its application to physics and number theory Littlewood can hardly be faulted for writing about what he knew best But readers must understand that his topics are not as prominent in contemporary mathematics as they once wereAll that said the Miscellany is still very much worth reading for the seriously mathematically curious First of all that's because of the historical insight it gives to a certain period in the long evolution of mathematics Besides that the final chapter on The Mathematician's Art of Work is worth the whole price of the book In just 12 pages it provides numerous gems of insight into how working mathematicians actually go about doing what they do Littlewood builds on what other leading mathematicians such as Poincaré and Hadamard have written about the habits that are essential for mathematical creativity When one is in the preparation stage of dealing with a difficult problem one should experiment diligently with a variety of approaches Then after the incubation stage when one has finally obtained a key insight concentrated effort is generally reuired to verify the insight Regarding these periods of conscious effort Littlewood has this to sayEither work all out or rest completely It is too easy when rather tired to fritter a whole day away with the intention of working but never getting properly down to it This is pure waste nothing is done and you have had no rest or relaxation I said 'Work all out' speed of associative thought is I believe important in creative workThat sounds like excellent advice to me It applies not only to doing mathematics but many other creative activities such as novel writing and computer programming But it all depends on whether you have a clear idea of what you need to do or whether instead you need to spend time incubating the next step of the work Trying to be productive when you don't really know what needs to be done the next lemma to prove or the next plot twist to imagine is likely to be wasted time


  2. Ari Ari says:

    An odd book but one worth perusing It's a collection of notes reminiscences interesting problems and essays by John Littlewood one of the great mathematicians of the first half of the 20th century Littlewood is famous especially for his collaboration with Hardy At one point a foreign observer commented that England had three great mathematicians Hardy Littlewood and Hardy LittlewoodLittlewood spent most of his career at Cambridge and the book practically smells of musty chambers in medieval buildings feasts at high table and late night brandy It's worth reading just for the evocation of Cambridge in the early 20th century There is a long collection of cattty remarks So and so has a career of the highest promise behind him Baldwin always hits the nail on the head but the nail doesn't go in He can extract a superiority complex from any raw material whatsoeverMany other collected stories David Sheppard later Bishop of Liverpool was a serious cricketer when young At one point his teammates saw him on his knees praying Oh Lord Thy will be done but a century this afternoon would be very acceptable A century is a particular high score at CricketOne of the things I learned I think from the introduction not the text is that the Hardy Littlewood collaboration was mostly by letters And they had some rather peculiar rules 1 Each of them was totally free to write to the other and it was indifferent if the content was right or wrong 2 The recipient was free to never respond or even read anything if they were busy or not in the mood 3 While not essential it is preferable that the two of them focus on different details 4 All papers would have both their names regardless of how much work they each put inOnce they had the ideas Littlewood's role in a joint paper was to make the logical skeleton in shorthand no distinction between r and r2 2pi and 1 etc But when I said Lemma 17 it stayed Lemma 17 That part is in the text


  3. Niloy Mitra Niloy Mitra says:

    Not a uick read; at times a bit too technical for mw


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Littlewood's Miscellany ❮Download❯ ➼ Littlewood's Miscellany Author Béla Bollobás – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk Littlewood's Miscellany by Bla Bollobs Littlewood's Miscellany is a good choice to read along with G H Hardy's A Mathematician's Apology which I reviewed here That's not because it says anything than Littlewood's Miscellany by Bla Bollobs Littlewood's Miscellany is a good choice to read along with G H Hardy's A Mathematician's Apology which I reviewed here That's not because it says anything than Hardy's book about the celebrated collaboration It doesn't But it does give a reasonable snapshot of the world of mathematics in the period roughly from to Littlewood's Miscellany John Edensor Littlewood Littlewood's Miscellany which includes most of the earlier work as well as much of the material Professor Littlewood collected after the publication of A Mathematician's Miscellany allows us to see academic life in Cambridge especially in Trinity College through the eyes of one of its greatest figures The joy that Professor Littlewood found in life and mathematics is reflected in the many A Mathematician's Miscellany | John E Littlewood | download A Mathematician's Miscellany | John E Littlewood | download | B–OK Download books for free Find books Littlewood’s Miscellany | Mathematical Association Littlewood’s Miscellany J E Littlewood edited by Bla Bollobs Publisher Cambridge University Press Publication Date Number of Pages Format Paperback Price ISBN Category General BLL Rating BLL The Basic Library List Committee recommends this book for acuisition by undergraduate mathematics libraries MAA Review; Table of Contents A Mathematician's Miscellany Wikipedia A Mathematician's Miscellany is an autobiography and collection of anecdotes by John Edensor LittlewoodIt is now out of print but Littlewood's Miscellany is its successor published by Cambridge University Press and edited by Bla Bollobs Editions Littlewood J E A Mathematician's Miscellany London Methuen MR Littlewood's Miscellany by Bollobas Bela ae Buy Littlewood's Miscellany by Bollobas Bela online on ae at best prices Fast and free shipping free returns cash on delivery available on eligible purchase com Customer reviews Littlewood's out of stars Littlewood's Miscellany Reviewed in the United States on November The surprising thing about this paper is that a man who could write it would The book contains many similar uips or less connected to mathematics or the process of doing mathematics There are also many interesting and deep mathematical puzzles some of them have become classics since the Littlewood's Miscellany YouTube This video is unavailable Watch ueue ueue Watch ueue ueue CiNii 図書 Littlewood's Miscellany Littlewood's Miscellany which includes most of the earlier work as well as much of the material Professor Littlewood collected after the publication of A Mathematician's Miscellany allows us to see academic life in Cambridge especially in Trinity College through the eyes of one of its greatest figures The joy that Professor Littlewood found in life and mathematics is reflected in the many Littlewood’s miscellany ztfnewseus Entradas sobre Littlewood’s miscellany escritas por Marta MS John Edensor Littlewood – fue un matemtico britnico conocido principalmente por su colaboracin con Godfrey Harold Hardy En public A Mathematician’s Miscellany –puede descargarse en este enlace– ue se reedit en bajo el ttulo de Littlewood’s miscellany aadiendo ms contenidos Littlewood's Miscellany by Bla Bollobs Littlewood's Miscellany is a good choice to read along with G H Hardy's A Mathematician's Apology which I reviewed here That's not because it says anything than Hardy's book about the celebrated collaboration It doesn't But it does give a reasonable snapshot of the world of mathematics in the period roughly from to Littlewood's Miscellany John Edensor Littlewood Littlewood's Miscellany which includes most of the earlier work as well as much of the material Professor Littlewood collected after the publication of A Mathematician's Miscellany allows us to see academic life in Cambridge especially in Trinity College through the eyes of one of its greatest figures The joy that Professor Littlewood found in life and mathematics is reflected in the many A Mathematician's Miscellany | John E Littlewood | download A Mathematician's Miscellany | John E Littlewood | download | B–OK Download books for free Find books Littlewood’s Miscellany | Mathematical Association Littlewood’s Miscellany J E Littlewood edited by Bla Bollobs Publisher Cambridge University Press Publication Date Number of Pages Format Paperback Price ISBN Category General BLL Rating BLL The Basic Library List Committee recommends this book for acuisition by undergraduate mathematics libraries MAA Review; Table of Contents A Mathematician's Miscellany Wikipedia A Mathematician's Miscellany is an autobiography and collection of anecdotes by John Edensor LittlewoodIt is now out of print but Littlewood's Miscellany is its successor published by Cambridge University Press and edited by Bla Bollobs Editions Littlewood J E A Mathematician's Miscellany London Methuen MR Littlewood's Miscellany by Bollobas Bela ae Buy Littlewood's Miscellany by Bollobas Bela online on ae at best prices Fast and free shipping free returns cash on delivery available on eligible purchase com Customer reviews Littlewood's out of stars Littlewood's Miscellany Reviewed in the United States on November The surprising thing about this paper is that a man who could write it would The book contains many similar uips or less connected to mathematics or the process of doing mathematics There are also many interesting and deep mathematical puzzles some of them have become classics since the Littlewood's Miscellany YouTube This video is unavailable Watch ueue ueue Watch ueue ueue CiNii 図書 Littlewood's Miscellany Littlewood's Miscellany which includes most of the earlier work as well as much of the material Professor Littlewood collected after the publication of A Mathematician's Miscellany allows us to see academic life in Cambridge especially in Trinity College through the eyes of one of its greatest figures The joy that Professor Littlewood found in life and mathematics is reflected in the many Littlewood’s miscellany ztfnewseus Entradas sobre Littlewood’s miscellany escritas por Marta MS John Edensor Littlewood – fue un matemtico britnico conocido principalmente por su colaboracin con Godfrey Harold Hardy En public A Mathematician’s Miscellany –puede descargarse en este enlace– ue se reedit en bajo el ttulo de Littlewood’s miscellany aadiendo ms contenidos.