Book: History of Mathematics since the 20th Century

In summary, the conversation discusses the need for a book on the history of mathematics in recent times, specifically since the 20th century. While most history of math books only cover classical history or have a short section on recent developments, there is a lack of comprehensive books on the subject. The closest option mentioned is Piergiorgio Odifreddi's "Mathematical Century" which focuses on specific problems discussed or solved in the 20th century. The difficulty in finding such a book is attributed to the fact that recent developments in areas such as computer science, game theory, and chaos theory are still considered "recent" and have not yet been fully integrated into traditional mathematics. As a result, it may be more effective to address
  • #1
eyec
6
0
Hi all,

Can anyone recommend a good book on the history of mathematics in very recent times (i.e. since the 20th century, specifically including the mathematical beginnings of computer science, game theory, chaos theory, complex systems, recent developments in stochastics etc.etc.)?
Most history of math books will cover only the classical history through the 19th century, or through the 1920s. Some add a very short section on more recent developments that reads more like an outlook. Monographs on more specific topics will sometimes add a section on the development of this branch of mathematics, for instance, a game theory textbook will typically include a section on the history of game theory, without, however, relating this to contemporary developments in other fields of mathematics even though many scientists were working on more than one topic (consider John von Neumann).

The closest thing to such a book on the recent history of mathematics I could find is Piergiorgio Odifreddi's "Mathematical Century: The 30 Greatest Problems of the Last 100 Years" which is not exactly a history of math book but rather a discussion of specific problems that were discussed or solved in the 20th century.

Are there good books about the recent history of mathematics? Can somebody recommend one / some?

Thanks ...
 
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  • #2
It lies a bit in the nature of the word historical that recent developments are usually not covered. Computer science, i.e. algorithm theory, the theory of languages etc. began in the 50's of last century, chaos theory even later, and game theory can probably be found in books about economy. All those areas still count as "recent". Plus they haven't developed yet in ordinary mathematics. They are still single areas of research or became part of external sciences (economy, computer science). Both reasons don't predestines them for mathematical history. I assume there are better chances to address them individually, e.g. algorithmics, than to search for a general historical treatment.
 

Related to Book: History of Mathematics since the 20th Century

What is the significance of studying the history of mathematics since the 20th century?

Studying the history of mathematics since the 20th century allows us to understand the evolution of mathematical concepts and theories, and how they have contributed to modern advancements in science, technology, and society. It also allows us to appreciate the work of mathematicians who have made significant contributions to the field.

How has mathematics changed and developed since the 20th century?

In the 20th century, mathematics experienced significant changes and developments, such as the rise of abstract algebra, the development of set theory and topology, the emergence of computer science and computational mathematics, and the application of mathematics in fields like physics, economics, and biology. These developments have greatly expanded the scope and applications of mathematics.

Who were some influential mathematicians in the 20th century?

Some influential mathematicians in the 20th century include Emmy Noether, known for her work in abstract algebra and theoretical physics, Alan Turing, considered the father of computer science, and John von Neumann, known for his contributions to mathematics and computer science. Other notable names include David Hilbert, Kurt Gödel, and Srinivasa Ramanujan.

What are some major advancements in mathematics since the 20th century?

Some major advancements in mathematics since the 20th century include the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem, the development of fractal geometry, the use of computers in mathematical research, and the discovery of new mathematical structures and principles. These advancements have greatly expanded our understanding and application of mathematics.

How has the history of mathematics since the 20th century influenced other fields of study?

The history of mathematics since the 20th century has had a significant impact on other fields of study, such as physics, computer science, economics, and biology. Many mathematical principles and theories have been applied in these fields, leading to advancements and breakthroughs in various areas of research and technology.

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