About this item

An entertaining illustrated reference to the role of mathematics in everyday life. The Math Behind... is a fascinating compilation of everyday events analyzed for their probability of occurring and how those odds are determined using mathematical equations and science. The book examines everything from how predictive text works to why buses come in threes and the likelihood that toast will land butter side down. Accessible and clear explanations, without dumbing down the science, and photographs and diagrams illustrate concepts and aid understanding. There are six chapters. Here are some of the questions covered: The human condition: Why hipsters look the same What are the chances of you even being born What makes certain songs so catchy Why we find some people more attractive than others Sports and games: The perfect 9-ball break in pool How to play the lottery How to take a free kick The secret behind Michael Jordan's air time Why the house always wins From A to B: The "causeless" traffic jam Just how likely is a plane to crash How long would it take a chicken to cross a road Is it possible to have a car journey with no red lights Rise of the machines: How bitcoins work How easy is it for a hacker to crack your password How does predictive text work How do scam emailers use probability Chance and coincidence: Does repeatedly clicking a mouse make it work any faster The chances of meeting your soulmate The six degrees of Kevin Bacon How illusionists use mathematics And another thing: At what percentage does juice become flavored water How penguins have developed the perfect huddle The amount of G-force on a rollercoaster.

About the Author

Colin Beveridge

Colin Beveridge (1977-) is a maths confidence coach for Flying Colours Maths and co-author of the Little Algebra Book.

He holds a PhD in Mathematics from the University of St Andrews, Scotland and worked for several years on NASA's Living With A Star project at Montana State University, where he came up with an equation which is named after him. It's used to help save the world from being destroyed by solar flares. So far so good.

He became tired of the glamour of academia and returned to the UK to concentrate on helping students come to terms with maths and show that not all mathematicians are boring nerds; some are exciting, relatively well-adjusted nerds.

Colin lives in Dorset, England with an espresso pot, several guitars and nothing to prove.

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