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Mathematical Philosophy, a Study of Fate and Freedom: Lectures for Educated Laymen

Naturevolume 113page741 (1924) | Download Citation

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Abstract

MOST of us make use of mathematical ideas and processes to some extent, and many of us have wondered from time to time what these ideas and processes really were. What is the meaning of function, transformation, invariance, limit, infinity? What are the relations of algebra and geometry? Has geometry anything to do with space? What is the meaning of a geometry of n dimensions? What are irrational numbers? These and many more questions naturally occur on reflection. The mathematicians themselves are seldom able to give much help to the outsider. None of the questions of this type are easy to answer, and some of them the mathematicians themselves could not answer until recently. Indeed, inquiry into the fundamental principles of mathematics is of very modern growth; the older school of mathematicians were content to find that the methods they use worked all right without finding out the reason why.

Mathematical Philosophy, a Study of Fate and Freedom: Lectures for Educated Laymen.

By Prof. Cassius J. Keyser. Pp. xv + 466. (New York: E. P. Dutton and Co., 1923.) 4.70 dollars.

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https://doi.org/10.1038/113741a0

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