Blurb: Nick Lomb’s Transit of Venus

Nick Lomb’s Transit of Venus 1631 to the Present is the best illustrated astronomy book for general readers since Terence Dickinson and Alan Dyer’s The Backyard Astronomer's Guide.  Everything about Lomb’s book from its eye seizing cover, rarely seen historic photographs and charming well researched commentary is first class. Transit is the type of work … Continue reading Blurb: Nick Lomb’s Transit of Venus

1421: The Crank History of Gavin Menzies

Crank history is big business and it's getting bigger. For reasons that infuriate skeptics there is a never-ending parade of pseudo-historians spouting rubbish that is eagerly devoured by a credulous pig ignorant public. Gavin Menzies' ludicrous tome, 1421: The Year China Discovered America, (also titled 1421: The Year China Discovered the World), is the finest … Continue reading 1421: The Crank History of Gavin Menzies

Open Source Hilbert for the Kindle

While searching for free Kindle books I found Project Gutenberg. Project Gutenberg offers free Kindle books but they also have something better! Would you believe $latex \LaTeX$ source code for some mathematical classics. The best book I've found so far is an English translation of David Hilbert's Foundations of Geometry. Hilbert's Foundations exposed some flaws … Continue reading Open Source Hilbert for the Kindle

Soon we will all be Software Archeologists

One of my pet peeves is the ridiculously short lifetimes of digital media.  I remember 9 track mainframe tapes and 5.5 inch floppies: technologies that thrived in an ancient bygone epoch known as the Eighties. Good luck trying to read 9 track tapes or 5.5 inch floppies today! You will have better luck with older … Continue reading Soon we will all be Software Archeologists

C. K. Raju: Genius or Crank (Part 1)

Lately I have been amusing myself by working through Euclid’s Elements. Despite studying mathematics in university, teaching it in high school and occasionally using it in my software-soaked day job I never got around to reading Euclid. Euclid is routinely lionized as the wellspring of axiomatic mathematics. Before The Elements mathematicians were clearly out of … Continue reading C. K. Raju: Genius or Crank (Part 1)