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Authors: David Wells

Games and Mathematics

Games and Mathematics
The appeal of games and puzzles is timeless and universal. In this unique book, David Wells explores the fascinating connections between games and mathematics, proving that mathematics is not just about calculation but also about imagination, insight and intuition.
The first part of the book introduces games, puzzles and mathematical recreations, including the Tower of Hanoi, knight tours on a chessboard, Nine Men's Morris and more. The second part explains how thinking about playing games can mirror the thinking of a mathematician, using scientific investigation, tactics and strategy, and sharp observation. Finally, the author considers game-like features found in a wide range of human behaviours, illuminating the role of mathematics and helping to explain why it exists at all.
This thought-provoking book is perfect for anyone with a thirst for mathematics and its hidden beauty; a good high-school grounding in mathematics is all the background that's required, and the puzzles and games will suit pupils from 14 years.
David Wells is the author of more than a dozen books on popular mathematics, puzzles and recreations. He has written many articles on mathematics teaching, and a secondary mathematics course based on problem solving. A former British under-21 chess champion and amateur 3-dan at Go, he has also worked as a game inventor and puzzle editor.
Games and Mathematics
Subtle Connections
Cambridge, New York, Melbourne, Madrid, Cape Town, Singapore, São Paulo, Delhi, Mexico City
Cambridge University Press
The Edinburgh Building,
Published in the United States of America by Cambridge University Press, New York
David Wells
This publication is in copyright. Subject to statutory exception and to the provisions of relevant collective licensing agreements, no reproduction of any part may take place without the written permission of Cambridge University Press.
First published
Printed and Bound in the United Kingdom by the MPG Books Group
A catalogue record for this publication is available from the British Library
Library of Congress Cataloguing in Publication data
Wells, D. G. (David G.)
Games and mathematics : subtle connections / David Wells.
p. cm.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN 978-1-107-02460-1 (hardback)
1. Games – Mathematical models. 2. Mathematical recreations. 3. Mathematics – Psychological aspects. I. Title.
QA95.W438 2012
510 – dc23 2012024343
Cambridge University Press has no responsibility for the persistence or accuracy of URLs for external or third-party internet websites referred to in this publication and does not guarantee that any content on such websites is, or will remain, accurate or appropriate.

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