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Flatterland: Like Flat Land Only More So Hardcover – Apr 11 2001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Basic Books; 1 edition (April 11 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738204420
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738204420
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 14.2 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 454 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,880,432 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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First Sentence
Seen from space, it was a strange world, with the austere beauty of a page from Euclid. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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By A Customer on June 21 2004
Format: Paperback
I've used Flatland and Sphereland in my High School Pre-Calculus class. They're both entertaining books, but also ones that are a bit elementary for the class. I would say they are written for entertainment first, enlightenment second. Flatterland is NOT the same type of book. I have never been an Ian Stewart fan, but I do like this book. While the first two books are easy enough for a 7th grade student to understand, the topics in this book will require most high school students to be walked through the material. It's not an easy read. I will use this book with some of my students in the future, but only those that enjoy a challenge. It's true that the book tries to cover too much, but I think you should view it as a survey of modern mathematics. In my opinion, this is some of the best writing I've seen from Stewart, but definitely not up to the literary level set by Flatland and Sphereland.
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By A Customer on Jan. 13 2004
Format: Paperback
As a high school student, I was tortured into reading this book for Math Analysis. Having previously read Flatland, I was not keen on the idea of reading the sequel. My grade-conscious self got the better of me and I started to read the book. From the first chapter I was enthralled! Ian Stewart knew how to write and keep my attention. My parents had to threaten me so I would put it down so I could eat. (Imagine: a high schooler entranced in a MATH book!) I so totally recommend this book because I would have NEVER understood Mandelblot (er... Mandelbrot) nor would I have read on to discover a plethora of new dimensions (one and a quarter). I would recommend any person, avid mathematician or high schooler, to read this. It was easily understood and Ian Stewart is a fantastic writer! Too bad they didn't have ten stars!
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Format: Paperback
This book is a sequel to Edwin Abbott's "Flatland" and makes its heroine a granddaughter of the hero of Abbott's book. Some people may find his playing with words excessive (his heroine is named "Victoria Line," combining the fact that she is literally a geometric "line" with the name of a subway line in London) but the book manages to cover a lot of territory in an amusing manner. I can't say I _learned_ a lot from the book, because I already knew most of its subject matter, but I'd certainly encourage someone who wanted to learn about curved spaces and higher dimensions to read it. The ultimate accolade: _After_ I had read it from cover to cover, I bought a copy, just so I'd have it in my own library.
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Format: Paperback
The book advertised as a sequel to Flatland but lacks everything Flatland has.
There is basically no plot, except some bare bone stuff to lead from one explanation of dimensional concepts to the next (what is intended to hold the semi-essays together is Vikkie Line a grand-grand-child of Abotts A.Sphere from Flatland ... Vikkie emerges into Spaceland and meets Space-Hopper who explains things line n-dimensions or n-fractional dimensions, etc.)
The explanations are bit like essays, their style somewhere between childlike and the stuff you read in mass market science magazines.
Now and then the auther manages some invent some witty and funny play of words, especially when it comes to the characters, so you can't help but smile in a couple of places.
So the book may be ok if you are not from a technical profession and looking some easy to read math and science articles, e.g. to read a chapter on the bus each day, and if you do not expect any useful plot.
But nontheless, the book comes nowhere near Flatland. Compared to that it makes the impression of just having been stiched togeteher from a couple of magazine essays.
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Format: Paperback
When I first read Flatland (the original) I was deeply inspired and fasinated by the 4th dimensional ideas it brought up. When I picked up a copy of Flatterland, I had hoped for an interesting read with maybe a few new concepts at best, but I certainly got more than I bargained for. Flatterland takes you on a journey through much more than just the 4th dimension (which is interesting enough already.) He takes you through non-Eucludean dimensions, the world of 1.25 dimensions, theoretical dimensions, and even a world of infinite dimension. Ian Stewart brilliantly plays on words and makes you laugh at every step of the way. The ideas brought up are so fasinating and cutting edge, that it definately deserves more than one reading, and better still, they are explained in detail so that even the most complex concepts are easily understood. This book is clever, amusing, and perhaps even brilliant. I highly recommend it.
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Format: Paperback
In this book agonizingly simple theories and bits of logic are spun into a web of mixed metaphors and frustrating wordplay that is tedious, confusing, incessant, and causes the reader to fixate and break his or her reading 'stride' every other sentance to translate into "Planiturthian".
Entire chapters are devoted to simple mathmatical theories I recall from high-school algebra, which could be described to conclusion over the course of a brief paragraph (such as tacking an extra dimension onto a geometrical equation). After reading the first paragraph of any section and translating all the gibberish, your mind will leap to the logical conclusion about seven pages before the author does.
This book offers little educational or entertaining rewards. Reading it is more of a test of determination.
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