Favorite NON-fiction ?

Sun Feb 2 01:28:05 PST 2003

On Sat, 2003-02-01 at 19:18, Casey Rousseau wrote:
> Damien Sullivan wrote:
> > 
> [snip]
> > Of course, my life has been such that I got to view calculus 
> > as basic math, properly possessed by anyone around me.  Yes, 
> > this attitude leads to problems as I meet more people...
> But of course calculus is basic math.  Before that it's all arithmetic and
> geometry.  :)

In college, I had the fortune to take a math class that showed how
to derive the real numbers and modern mathematics from very limited
set theory-- just a handful of basic postulates and lots of logic
were all it took to get to arithmetic, calculus, and beyond.
At that point, I finally understood why *every* year in grade
school, math started out with a week of set theory and then
dropped the topic like a hot potato:  they were trying to pass on
this beautiful vision, but were utterly failing to do so.
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