Thursday, August 5, 2021

Shape: a very short review

Jordan Ellenberg is probably the foremost writer in the micro-niche of what I'd call "layman's mathematics books," a speciality that is perfect for people like me (math nut since I was knee-high to a grasshopper, but have very little involvement with real mathematics nowadays).

Ellenberg's latest book is Shape: The Hidden Geometry of Information, Biology, Strategy, Democracy, and Everything Else.

It is, like all of Ellenberg's other work, simultaneously rigorous, educational, entertaining, and approachable, which is quite a hard combination to achieve.

Shape is a serious book, 500 pages of meaty material, and you aren't likely to race through it. You'll either find it fascinating, in which case you'll be stopping every few pages to let what he says settle into your mind, or you'll decide after a few dozen pages that it's not the book for you, in which case that's that.

I enjoy Ellenberg's work, and I hope he continues to write many more such.

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