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[The Annotated Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions] [by: Ian Stewart] (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 7. August 2008

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Taschenbuch, 7. August 2008
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The Annotated Flatland Illuminates Abbot's Victorian references, weaves in little known biographical information about Abbott and his intellectual circle, and traces the scientific evolution of geographical forms and dimensions. This title makes connections between Flatland and Abbott's life and times. Full description

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89 von 89 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
a brilliant annotated version of this math geek classic 31. März 2002
Von audrey - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I first read Flatland as an undergraduate mathematics major. It was an epiphany. With spectacularly clear words and explanations Abbott related, in a first person narrative, the thoughts and experiences of A. Square as he explained his own two-dimensional world and explored others of varying dimension. After reading it, I looked at the world in a new way. It was one of the first books I ever wrote in; I was so excited with thought that I underlined, punctuated, and jotted ideas down in the margins -- breaking a lifelong habit of respecting books by treating them like sacred objects. I was grateful to Abbott for his ideas and his lucidity. Breaching biology and time, he had awakened in me a new appreciation of the aesthetics of science and mathematics. Now, here comes Ian Stewart to make this wonderful book even more interesting!

This book is a pleasure in so many ways. The quality of the paper and typesetting are exceptional, the layout is clear, the annotator is a talented writer, and the volume is generously augmented with photo reproductions and line drawings. Stewart's text is just wonderful. While the preface begins with a question: "What is Flatland and why should it be annotated?" and continues with Professor Stewart's reasoning and motivation in tackling this subject, the introduction focuses on Flatland's author, Edwin Abbott Abbott. Stewart is a fine writer and I learned a lot in both sections. But that is just an appetizer. Stewart states in the preface that his intellectual pursuit of all things Flatland led him down many paths and, taking his cue from long-time interesting thinker Martin Gardner, he lets the information flow. Annotations vary in length, from one paragraph to several pages, and cover a magnificent range of subjects, each made entertaining, informative and relevant. One would expect, and does find, mathematics explanations, but Stewart also draws intellectual connections between Abbott and his contemporaries, explains historical references and contextualizes Abbott's contributions to scholarly thought.

I learned something on every page, and enjoyed the reading of it. Stewart has produced a volume that can be compared favorably to Gardner's Annotated Alice in Wonderland, for which he expresses admiration. While this scintillating annotated version of Abbott's classic text should prove delightful for those interested in mathematics, physics, or the history of science, it will be irresistibly fascinating for any fan of Flatland.
Well done. Highly recommended.
67 von 67 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Intellectual Fun with Commentary 2. Juni 2002
Von Timothy Haugh - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Flatland is a novel originally published in 1884 by Edwin A. Abbott. It is told from the point of view of A. Square, that four-sided resident of the titular country. The first part of the book consists of a description of what it is like to live in a two-dimensional world. The second part concerns A. Square's encounter with a sphere and his subsequent "visions" of pointland, lineland and spaceland.
The purpose of this novel is two-fold: to introduce the casual reader into the concepts of multi-dimensional spaces (i.e. what will become the concept of four dimensional space-time) and to provide social commentary on Victorian society. I cannot comment much on what he achieves in terms of opening the eyes of the Victorian reader to the ills of that society; however, I find his ability to illuminate the concepts of dimensionality extra-ordinary. As a math and physics teacher, I am always looking for ways to open my students' minds to visualizing what they are doing. Even after well over 100 years, few people have approached Abbott's clarity in helping people visualize the difference between different dimensions. One of the best examples: a square only "looks" like a square to someone who can see in three dimensions. A square itself, trapped in a plane, would see another square (or, indeed, any figure) only as a line. This leads to intriguing thoughts on what creatures who live in higher dimensions than our own see as they look at us.
Of course, the story of Flatland alone is wonderful but Stewart's annotation and commentary take the book to another level. On nearly every page, Stewart offers insight and background into the text. Unable to resist the pun: he added another dimension to the book. Having read Flatland many years ago and enjoyed it, I felt I understood the book much better this time around with Stewart's help. Anyone with an interest in math and physics should not pass up the opportunity to read this edition of Flatland.
16 von 16 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Combines math with magic and fun! 20. Juni 2006
Von Steve Reina - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
With the Alice in Wonderland books, the late 1800s seem to have been the time for really creative mathemetical writing.

Although not as frequently read, Flatland, the Edwin Abbott Abbott story of a little square coming to understanding that higher dimensions do indeed exist outside his world is a delightful read. For those seeking to understand what life is like in other dimensions, Flatland is very comprehensible with clear writing and simple, easy to understand illustrations that help drive home Abbott's points.

Originally written with many sly references to the then existing state of British culture, Abbott's invitation to try and understand higher dimensions was also an invitation to society of his time to try to re think its views on a myriad of issues...including its openness to women in education.

In this way, Abbott converted viewing higher dimensions into both a mathematical and social challenge...points Stewart was sensitive to in his annotations and his own homage, Flatterland.

Although other editions of this work exist, the annotated Flatland is the one to buy both because of its faithful reproduction of the original and its thought provoking and helpful footnotes that give the work broader meaning.
31 von 39 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An Excellent Classic 22. Mai 2002
Kinder-Rezension - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Contrary to this silly form I am actully 14. I am an eighth grader and I read this for my Algebra 1 class. I fell in love with it instanly. The themes, ideas, and satires all intertwined create one of the best books ever written. The paralle of the unique twist between Euclidian and Non-Euclidian and the satire of Victorian England are wonderful. This book makes you both laugh-out-loud and cry, but most of all it makes you think. Edwin Abbot Abbot was not only a mathamatican but also a brillent liggest. His pros style makes the book all the better... BUY THIS BRILLENT BOOK
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Proto science fiction math classic 13. August 2009
Von A. Davis - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Ummm.... to those who complain this book is "anti-woman".... we DO understand what satire is, don't we? Like, Mark Twain wasn't really a racist. And Jonathan Swift didn't really advocate eating Irish infants. OK, cool.

Anyway, the book is indispensable. And the annotations, aside from clarifying and expanding the text, touch on so many peripheral aspects that open up new areas for study, in and of themselves. A joyous read.
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