Saturday, October 13, 2018

The Golden Ratio: The Divine Beauty of Mathematics

The Golden Ratio is a book on mathematics, written by Gary B. Meisner, an applied math guy who kept finding instances of phi (φ) in everything from sunflowers to renaissance paintings.

From his website:
The inspiration for the site was a deepening awareness and appreciation of the beauty and design in life. The more I explored, the more I discovered that the number called Phi, or 1.6180339…, appears as a pervasive constant of design in many aspects of our existence.
This book is ostensibly aimed at the layman.  That being said, it's not going to be a free ride. Much of the content covers concepts which require a deal of effort and thought. It is enjoyable on a surface read.  The illustrations and accompanying notes are appealing and historically interesting, however, the meat of the book requires some effort and probably some fiddling with pen and paper, following the proofs in the book.  The description of Pythagoras and the Kepler triangle made me smile.  (It's both gorgeous and elegant).

The book is arranged in chapters which introduce and develop the idea of phi, explain the golden ratio and progress to a discussion of occurrences of the golden ratio in art, mathematics, biology, engineering, and astronomy amongst others.  The text is accompanied by illustrations and stock photography which support and illustrate the examples. The book ends with appendices, a bibliography and further reading list along with notes from the author, image credits and acknowledgements and finishes with a cross referenced index.

This edition was released 18th Sept 2018 by Quarto's Race Point imprint, it's 224 pages and available in hardcover (and possibly ebook) formats.

Four stars for the engaging text and enthusiastic prose along with the lovely illustrations. The author's passion for the subject shines throughout the book.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes

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