In the mid-eighteenth century, Swiss-born mathematician Leonhard Euler developed a formula so innovative and complex that it continues to inspire research, discussion, and even the occasional limerick. Dr. Euler's Fabulous Formula shares the fascinating story of this groundbreaking formula—long regarded as the gold standard for mathematical beauty—and shows why it still lies at the heart of complex number theory. In some ways a sequel to Nahin's An Imaginary Tale, this book examines the many applications of complex numbers alongside intriguing stories from the history of mathematics. Dr. Euler's Fabulous Formula is accessible to any reader familiar with calculus and differential equations, and promises to inspire mathematicians for years to come.
Paul J. Nahin is the author of many bestselling popular math books, including Mrs. Perkins's Electric Quilt, In Praise of Simple Physics, and An Imaginary Tale (all Princeton). He is professor emeritus of electrical engineering at the University of New Hampshire.
"Nahin includes gems from all over mathematics, ranging from engineering applications to beautiful pure-mathematical identities. . . . It would be good to have more books like this."--Timothy Gowers, Nature
"Nahin's tale of the formula e[pi] i+1=0, which links five of the most important numbers in mathematics, is remarkable. With a plethora of historical and anecdotal material and a knack for linking events and facts, he gives the reader a strong sense of what drove mathematicians like Euler."--Matthew Killeya, New Scientist
"It is very difficult to sum up the greatness of Euler. . . . This excellent book goes a long way to explaining the kind of mathematician he really was."--Steve Humble, Mathematics Today
"What a treasure of a book this is! This is the fourth enthusiastic, informative, and delightful book Paul Nahin has written about the beauties of various areas of mathematics. . . . This book is a marvelous tribute to Euler's genius and those who built upon it and would make a great present for students of mathematics, physics, and engineering and their professors."--Henry Ricardo, MAA Reviews
"The heart and soul of the book are the final three chapters on Fourier series, Fourier integrals, and related engineering. One can recommend them to all applied math students for their historical development and sensible content."--Robert E. O'Malley, Jr., SIAM Review
"This is a book for mathematicians who enjoy historically motivated mathematical explanations on a high mathematical level."--Eberhard Knobloch, Mathematical Reviews
"It is a 'popular' book, written for a general reader with some mathematical background equivalent to a first-year undergraduate course in the UK."--Robin Wilson, London Mathematical Society Newsletter
Table of Contents
Other Princeton books authored or coauthored by Paul J. Nahin: