TRIGONOMETRIC
Delights
ELI MAOR
Trigonometry has always been the black sheep of mathematics. Too advanced to be part of "elementary math," yet too elementary for the higher branches of the profession, it has been looked upon as a glorified form of geometry, complicated by tedious computation. Nothing could be further from the truth. Uniquely positioned as a meeting point between pure and applied mathematics, its rich history shows how different branches of scienceamong them geography, astronomy, physics, and even musichave influenced one another.
In this book, Eli Maor rejects the usual and
Descriptions of the sine and cosine functions
and their trigonometric relatives. He brings the
subject to life in a compelling blend of
mathematics, history, and biography. From the
"prototrigonometry" of the Egyptian pyramid
builders to Renaissance Europe's quest for
more accurate artillery; from the earliest known
trigonometric table, carved on a clay tablet by
an unknown Babylonian scholar, to Fourier's
famous theorem, which finally explained the
source of musical harmony, here is a rich
tapestry of almost four thousand years of
trigonometric history.
The first part of the book assumes only high
school algebra and trigonometry; the second
part uses some elementary calculus.
Trigonometric Delights will change forever
our view of a once dreaded subject.
Eli Maor teaches the history of mathematics at
Loyola University in Chicago. He has
published extensively in journals of
mathematics and mathematics education,
among them Mathematics Teacher and the
International Journal for Mathematics
Education in Science and Technology. His
previous two books, To Infinity and Beyond
and e: The Story of a Number (both available
from Princeton University Press) received high
acclaim and have appeared in several
translations.
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Copyright © 19962018 Alexander Bogomolny
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