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    I'm pretty sure theoretical is the wrong choice of word but what I'm trying to say is something like maths for beginners (all the way to advanced) but for someone who has no time to go through the small and annoying details. Essentially a bad ass and academic book written by a professor at some edgy university which teaches you maths at a high level but from the beginning in a condensed and time-saving way.

    Does this exist or am I asking for too much?
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    I'd say the closest to what you're talking about is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Popular_mathematics

    I think most mathematicians would say these books don't really "work" in terms of getting people to properly understand the topics. Once you avoid the "small and annoying details" you're not really learning about mathematics, more "these are some things that real mathematicians have proved".

    It's not quite as black and white as that of course, but the issue is definitely a real one.
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    (Original post by DFranklin)
    I'd say the closest to what you're talking about is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Popular_mathematics

    I think most mathematicians would say these books don't really "work" in terms of getting people to properly understand the topics. Once you avoid the "small and annoying details" you're not really learning about mathematics, more "these are some things that real mathematicians have proved".

    It's not quite as black and white as that of course, but the issue is definitely a real one.
    Ouch. Those books linked in popular mathematics are quite topical and not concerned with learning maths but rather conceptualizing maths ideas. I guess I will have to 'learn' it but I'm not sure where to start. It's an intellectual burden on me.
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    (Original post by Fact)
    I'm pretty sure theoretical is the wrong choice of word but what I'm trying to say is something like maths for beginners (all the way to advanced) but for someone who has no time to go through the small and annoying details. Essentially a bad ass and academic book written by a professor at some edgy university which teaches you maths at a high level but from the beginning in a condensed and time-saving way.

    Does this exist or am I asking for too much?
    Maybe you want something like the Princeton Companion to Mathematics: Timothy Gowers

    I haven't seen it myself, so I can't tell you what level it's at though.

    Other possibilities are the recent books by Leonard Susskind, which are aimed at wanna-be theoretical physicists. They are heavily mathematical however. (The Absolute Minimum is one, I forget the other(s))

    I agree with DFranklin's comment though: you can't really learn maths without doing maths, working all the little examples and problems, and so on.
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    (Original post by Fact)
    I'm pretty sure theoretical is the wrong choice of word but what I'm trying to say is something like maths for beginners (all the way to advanced) but for someone who has no time to go through the small and annoying details. Essentially a bad ass and academic book written by a professor at some edgy university which teaches you maths at a high level but from the beginning in a condensed and time-saving way.

    Does this exist or am I asking for too much?
    what level are you 'equipped' to. ie have u done gcse , alevel ?! I recommend the Olympiad books by UKMT although for 16 year olds + (most of them)



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    they are probably the most complex maths problems and concepts written by christopher j bradley. Proffessor at cambridge and head of IMO teams couple of times. The maths is basically crazy hard and most graduates in maths will most lilely struggle with it.


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    Algebra of geometry is very good.
    Number theory is also good.



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    the books are designed to start tackling after gcse period and between a levels.


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    (Original post by atsruser)
    Maybe you want something like the Princeton Companion to Mathematics: Timothy Gowers

    I haven't seen it myself, so I can't tell you what level it's at though.

    Other possibilities are the recent books by Leonard Susskind, which are aimed at wanna-be theoretical physicists. They are heavily mathematical however. (The Absolute Minimum is one, I forget the other(s))

    I agree with DFranklin's comment though: you can't really learn maths without doing maths, working all the little examples and problems, and so on.
    That book does look good indeed. I will purchase it after refreshing my memory on the basics.

    (Original post by physicsmaths)
    what level are you 'equipped' to. ie have u done gcse , alevel ?! I recommend the Olympiad books by UKMT although for 16 year olds + (most of them)



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    Probably GCSE, that was the last time I did math and I feel like I've forgotten most of it, done all essay A-levels so my mind needs a bit of a wake-up.
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    (Original post by Fact)
    I'm pretty sure theoretical is the wrong choice of word but what I'm trying to say is something like maths for beginners (all the way to advanced) but for someone who has no time to go through the small and annoying details. Essentially a bad ass and academic book written by a professor at some edgy university which teaches you maths at a high level but from the beginning in a condensed and time-saving way.

    Does this exist or am I asking for too much?
    What kind of understanding are we talking about? Being able to understand what people are on about in a conversation, or being able to sit down and explain how something works, alongside derivations? Because the former you might be able to get from a book. The latter.... no.
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    I don't think that would really be possible, and even if it were, I think it would be akin to memorizing trivia if you remove the details, and so you'd probably very quickly forget it.

    The best way to learn maths is just to do problems unfortunately/fortunately

    Good news - to get to end of A level knowledge, you need to know very little, the tricky bit is just having trained your understanding to a suitable level
 
 
 
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