Buy Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences Bound for Schools & Libraries ed. by Professor John Allen Paulos (ISBN: ) from. by. John Allen Paulos. · Rating details · 3, ratings · reviews. Dozens of examples in innumeracy show us how it affects not only personal economics. Innumeracy – by John Allen Paulos. ISBN: Date read: How strongly I recommend it: 8/10 (See my list of + books, for more.).

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Although his points are valid, and at times slyly humorous, the tone is at times condescending and and self-pitying. There’s a occasional air of smug superiority, and the author suggests outright that the innumerate students of today are just too lazy to learn about math.

Dozens of examples in innumeracy show us how it affects paullos only personal economics and travel plans, but explains mis-chosen mates, inappropriate drug-testing, and the allure of pseudo-science.

At one point he says he finds it hard to write at length, preferring brevity and concision.

Math is a completely hierarchical subject; 3. It certainly made me want to learn calculus Paulos talks about mathematical incompetence when looking at probability, scientific notation, polls and surveys, pseudoscience, games of chance, coincidence, logic, word problems, statistics, how questions and word problems are framed. The word that this book can be described by is innumeracy, and all variations of it. It’s difficult 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.

But I must admit I was looking for a bit more on what causes innumeracy and what could be done to stem this continual loss because these lacks are a drain on society.

See 2 questions about Innumeracy…. What the package says isn”t wrong; there are more than three billion possible states. 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.

I’m quite good with math myself so it was easy for me to follow everything, but parts of the book came off more as a “we smart people get why that’s so dumb”. I also liked his discussion of coincidences – for example, hearing in the morning that vivid details of your previous night’s dream match what you hear on the news.


The author goes on to bash more pseudoscience in detail; I agree with him but doubt that anybody who believes that stuff in the first place is going to be convinced otherwise by something as simple as facts and math. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. I do appreciate the author’s clear love of math, and there are several good examples.

Innumeracy (book) – Wikipedia

Not Bad Reviews blakerosser Enthusiastic people could go into various careers where they may make a difference if only they had that solid mathematical base needed for a few college credits.

Another example is the old adage “everything comes in threes” Paulos, Aug 04, Jim Razinha rated it it was amazing. May 23, Jerzy rated it liked it Shelves: No bibliography or index. When someone is actually “mathematically inclined’, the university levels are usually among the best but in too many cases, it is far too late for the majority. Part of making math relevant should be getting away from pure math, but then when it is applied you can’t just ignore the factors that are not easily broken down into math.

That numbers are utilized, they are automatically ‘mathematical’ and it scares people off. For one, the author is a bit soap-boxy, and despite his expressed hope in the beginning that his tone is not scolding, he does come off as a bit condescending, much like he is a contemporary of Dawkins. Since Paulos studied philosophy as an undergrad and mathematics in graduate school, he respectfully acknowledges the duality of the two disciplines. Mar 16, blakeR rated it it was ok Shelves: Individual decisions and broader policy decisions are far too often made on the basis of badly understood statistics, data, and mathematical principles.

We have a handle on what a thousand really means, but what is the difference between a billion and a trillion? Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews.

Most of the book is a collection of examples commonly seen in other pop math books: If player 1 has the best average score in both halves of a season, is it possible for player 2 to have a higher average overall?


He takes the most relevant and sometimes controversial subjects and applies them to math while pointing out how some things are not correct at all. Additionally, I will never pick up any book by Paulos again, nor will I read anything he recommends. The TNT equivalent of all the nuclear weapons in the world paulps to 25, megatons, or 50 trillion pounds, or 10, pounds for every man, woman, and child on earth. Paulos did get himself a gig at ABCNews. Johhn to meet all your book preview and review needs.

He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. If you believe you are “not a math person,” then this is the book for you. A fast read, recommended to people who fear numbers but shouldn’t. Learn more about Amazon Prime. In this way we would be measuring the relative safety against the relative danger adding on the likelihood of the endeavor. One of countless books written for those who struggle dealing with numbers in any form.

Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences

In being numerate one would know that an identification number with 9 digits will have one billion possible different numbers.

The skeptical, reticent owner doesn”t say a word as he adds the bill on the cash register. Never judge a book by its cover or, in this case, by its title.

That’s all well and good, but it c In “Innumeracy”, John Allen Paulos argues that the level of mathematical illiteracy in the United States is shocking and unacceptable, that innumeracy has real and pernicious negative effects, and that it is promoted by poor teaching.

Innumeracy is a book about how to not be ignorant of numbers and math. Math numbs or limits our freedom. Plus, How Not to be Wrong also goes into other interesting topics, like the real-world applications of non-Euclidean geometry.