by. John Allen Paulos. · Rating details · 3, ratings · reviews. Dozens of examples in innumeracy show us how it affects not only personal economics. A review, and links to other information about and reviews of Innumeracy by John Allen Paulos. Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences. Front Cover. John Allen Paulos. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, – Mathematics – pages.

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The writing style is casual and engaging, and the examples are relevant and interesting.

Review of a book on mathematical illiteracy | Bankers Anonymous

Mar 04, Mark Tuminello rated it it was amazing. He defines “innumeracy” as “an inability to deal comfortably with the fundamental notions of number and chance”, and it seems as popular as ever. Trying to meet all your book preview and review needs. Many educated people have little grasp for these numbers and are sllen unaware that a million is 1,; a billion is 1,,; and a trillion, 1,, Both traits are obvious here, and in that sense I have to think that he is one of the least effective ambassadors that Math could have wound up with.

Victor Nabila coincidence and absolute certainty are two very different concepts. To make small talk, he remarked thatthe number of the taxi which had brought him, was a rather dull number, to which Ramanujan replied immediately, “No, Hardy! Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. Paulos mathematics, Aallen U. View all 7 comments. There’s ijnumeracy some overlap with Thinking, Fast and Slow regarding cognitive blocks to thinking mathema Innumeracy is a great book for the era of Ebola panic even if it is quite dated.

One pauulos in a car, incidentally, demolishes the car and kills everyone in it.

For example, the stadium in our town seats 1, people; a wall nearby has 10, bricks; etc. Paulos speaks mainly of the common misconceptions in regard to numbers. Jhon much weight should you put into getting back a positive reading on a test at the doctor’s office? Worse is that the general examples often seem entirely arbitrary — chosen, the innumerate might suspect, merely to prove a point and not necessarily relevant in or applicable to other situations.

By the way, it would be great if there was a tick box that let me request emails when jon comments are answered.


Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences

Selected pages Title Page. I once had a conversation with a doctor who, within approximately twenty minutes, stated that a certain procedure he was contemplating a had a one-chance-in-a-million risk associated with it; b was 99 percent safe; and c usually went quite well.

Aug 04, Jonathan rated it liked it Shelves: There are misconceptions regarding numbers and Mr. The focus on Core could be more productive. It’s vy to follow him in certain passages if you’re not taking notes or have a calculator handy, but for the most part he uses tight, compressed, powerful writing, boiling everything down to the essence. No system of thought, however powerful, is without its weaknesses.

Innumeracy – John Allen Paulos

My puns and bad jokes aren’t pathological – I’m just studying! An easy little read about mathematical illiteracy. I mean, people should understand mathematics beyond, ibnumeracy, knowing how many shoes they need for how many feet they have. But each of these topics could have benefited from a much deeper treatment, with both more examples and a more structured argument of how the problem affects us and what we can do to prevent it. Although I think in the book the author is explaining in the following paragraphs how the sentence you posted is actually false.

We acknowledge and remind and warn you that they aleln, in fact, be entirely unrepresentative of the actual reviews by any other measure.

It often feels as though Paulos is calling anyone not mathematically literate an idiot. To cite some happier illustrations for smaller numbers, the standard I use for the lowly thousand is a section of Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia which I know contains 1, seats and which is easy to picture.

I like the mental exercise they provide. If so, this book could potentially blow your mind. He’d hate that I used the adjective ‘cold,’ there Other editions – View all Innumeracy: His arrogance is particularly off-putting when casually insulting educators a population to which I belong and also when dismissing dreams; though I accept his point about their predictability, Innumerscy respect the human mind enough to lnnumeracy we probably don’t understand exactly how they work yet.

It cracks me up that, at one point, phrenological exams were commonly a precondition of employment in big corporations!

Book Review: Innumeracy, by John Allen Paulos

They should read my stuff to help them get started down the learning-finance path. I don’t have much more to say beyond the fact that this would make worthwhile reading for just about everyone. If that makes me “innumerate,” so be it.


Still as relevant in as it was in What the package says isn”t wrong; there are more than three billion possible states. Without some appreciation of common large numbers, it”s impossible to react with the proper skepticism to terrifying reports that more than a million American kids are kidnapped each year, or with the proper sobriety to a warhead carrying a megaton of explosive power–the equivalent of a million tons or two billion pounds of TNT.

The book was intriguing, and had many real world examples that put what it was teaching into perspective. Innumeracy is a great book for the era of Ebola panic even if it is quite dated. Not Bad Reviews blakerosser Dec 01, Kevin rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Modern Homo sapiens is probably less than 10 trillion seconds old; and the subsequentcomplete disappearance of the Neanderthal version of early Homo sapiens occurred only a trillion or so seconds ago.

My other complaint is that some of his arguments are poorly structured, but I am willing to forgive it because he is not really making any arguments that any reasonable person who would be reading the book would need to be air tight.

I”m always amazed and depressed when I encounter students who have no idea what the population of the United States is, or the approximate distance from coast to coast, or roughly what percentage of the world is Chinese. This page was last edited on 27 Decemberat This book speaks for itself. The visitor finally asks if he”s given him the right amount of money, to which the Mainer grudgingly responds, “Just barely.

Now, if we reward good performance and punish poor performance, and regression to the mean occurs, we are likely to assume that punishment causes improvement while praise causes a lapse – even if the punishment or reward had no effect on the next day’s performance. Agriculture”s been here for approximately billion seconds ten thousand yearswriting for about billion seconds, and rock music has been around for only about one billion seconds.