I'm looking for a book about mathematics, but not about calculus, algebra or any field of math. I want to read a book about the use of mathematics in the world, for example, Why is math so useful. Or maybe something about the point of view of a mathematician in the world or even a biographyy of someone math related. Any book related to math (but not with the theorems/definitions/integrals/etc) I will take in consideration. Thanks
closed as too broad by Simply Beautiful Art, Namaste, J. M. is a poor mathematician, Did, Matthew Towers Nov 6 '17 at 10:45
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"A Mathematician's Apology" by G.H. Hardy can be a good starting point. It is a classic from the '40, also written by an incredible Mathematician.
This as to be intended as an answer to the questions " book about the use of mathematics in the world", "something about the point of view of a mathematician" and "biography". It certainly addresses also the topic of the usefulness of Mathematics to the human society but, the author instead of providing arguments to prove that Mathematics is "so useful" will try to show that the true and beautiful Mathematics is useless to the society. This has to be intended in a good way since Hardy, who was a pacifist, wanted to take distances from the possible (negative) applications of Mathematics to war.
A good idea-since you are after all a Maths student-would be "Mathematics Made Difficult" by Carl E. Linderholm.
Then what about start and reading about the historical development of math ?
For instance I found very interesting A History of Mathematics-Carl B. Boyer.
Currently I am reading How Not To Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking (Amazon Link). That sounds like what you are looking for, and so far I'm quite enjoying it.
One of my favorites is Beyond Numeracy bu John Allen Paulos (1991). It's written "magazine style," with about 60 short essays describing various mathematical subjects and why they are important. Some of the essays are of an theoretical nature, but many do describe examples or real world use and why math is so useful. From the book flap:
"...presents in engrossing fashion a broad range of mathematical concepts, from the basic to the advanced, that have transformed our civilization."
I read it my very first semester in college. I didn't understand everything in it. But it is very accessible.
"What is mathematics, really?", by Reuben Hersh. From the blurb:
In what sense do mathematical objects exist? How can we have knowledge of them? Why do mathematicians think mathematical entities exist for ever, independent of human knowledge?
On "Why is math so useful?", this is a question that's been discussed in recent years by philosophers of science and philosophers of math. Mark Colyvan's An Introduction to the Philosophy of Mathematics includes a bit of dicussion of this subject, and should have pointers to others' work on the topic. Mathematically, the book seems quite accessible to someone who's already quite comfortable with math. It is definitely introductory with respect to philosophy (of math), but philosophical thinking about something like math can seem foreign at first to some people.
To give you some context to how I'm interpreting your question, in a very informal way: Sometimes mathematical entities--numbers, sets, structures, etc.--seem to live in a realm of their own. Some mathematicians and philosophers think about math this way. Yet math seems to be essential to the ways that science learns about physical world. These two perspectives seem to conflict, so some adjustment to thinking about math and science seems necessary. There are different ways to do this.