Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving
  • Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving
  • Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving
  • Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving
ISBN: 026251429X
EAN13: 9780262514293
Language: English
Release Date: Mar 31, 2010
Pages: 152
Dimensions: 0.5" H x 8.8" L x 6.8" W
Weight: 0.55 lbs.
Format: Paperback
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Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving

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Book Overview

An antidote to mathematical rigor mortis, teaching how to guess answers without needing a proof or an exact calculation.In problem solving, as in street fighting, rules are for fools: do whatever works--don't just stand there Yet we often fear an unjustified leap even though it may land us on a correct result. Traditional mathematics teaching is largely about solving exactly stated problems exactly, yet life often hands us partly defined problems needing only moderately accurate solutions. This engaging book is an antidote to the rigor mortis brought on by too much mathematical rigor, teaching us how to guess answers without needing a proof or an exact calculation.In Street-Fighting Mathematics, Sanjoy Mahajan builds, sharpens, and demonstrates tools for educated guessing and down-and-dirty, opportunistic problem solving across diverse fields of knowledge--from mathematics to management. Mahajan describes six tools: dimensional analysis, easy cases, lumping, picture proofs, successive approximation, and reasoning by analogy. Illustrating each tool with numerous examples, he carefully separates the tool--the general principle--from the particular application so that the reader can most easily grasp the tool itself to use on problems of particular interest. Street-Fighting Mathematics grew out of a short course taught by the author at MIT for students ranging from first-year Read More chevron_right

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