Saturday, May 24, 2008

Book Review (#13 of 2008)

I've been given a brief respite from the joys of fatherhood, so I thought I'd catch up on a book review.

Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk by Peter L. Bernstein.

How did mathematics get started? How did it develop? How did statistics and probability develop. How was the normal distribution "discovered"? This book is the fascinating history of how mankind went from blindly leaving everything to fate to trying to figure out what the odds were and to forecast the future.

Excellent book, a must-read if you're into statistics and probability. Really helps me understand where the concepts come from and how they develop. Very helpful in understanding real-world analysis. Has inspired me to read even further. The chapters on people like Blaise Pascal, and their struggle with faith vs. mathematics and probability were quite helpful in identifying similar dichotomies in my own life.

I give it 4 stars out of 5.

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