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How to make it, break it, hack it, crack it. The secret history of codes and code breaking. Simon Singh's best-selling title The Code Book now re-issued for the young-adult market. The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography. Simon Singh brings life to an amazing story of puzzles, codes, languages and riddles -- revealing the continual pursuit to disguise and uncover, and to work out the secret languages of others. Codes have influenced events throughout history, both in the stories of those who make them and those who break them. The betrayal of Mary Queen of Scots and the cracking of the enigma code that helped the Allies in World War II are major episodes in a continuing history of cryptography. In addition to stories of intrigue and warfare, Simon Singh also investigates other codes, the unravelling of genes and the rediscovery of ancient languages and most tantalisingly, the Beale ciphers, an unbroken code that could hold the key to a USD20 million treasure.
Since humans began writing, they have been communicating in code. This obsession with secrecy has had dramatic effects on the outcome of wars, monarchies and individual lives.
With clear mathematical, linguistic and technological demonstrations of many of the codes, as well as illustrations of some of the remarkable personalities behind them – many courageous, some villainous – The Code Book traces the fascinating development of codes and code-breaking from military espionage in Ancient Greece to modern computer ciphers, to reveal how the remarkable science of cryptography has often changed the course of history.
Amongst many extraordinary examples, Simon Singh relates in detail the story of Mary, Queen of Scots, trapped by her own code and put to death by Elizabeth I; the strange history of the Beale Ciphers, describing the hidden location of a fortune in gold, buried somewhere in Virginia in the nineteenth century and still not found; and the monumental efforts in code-making and code-breaking that influenced the outcomes of the First and Second World Wars.
Now, with the Information Age bringing the possibility of a truly unbreakable code ever nearer, and cryptography one of the major debates of our times, Singh investigates the challenge that technology has brought to personal privacy today.
Dramatic, compelling and remarkably far-reaching, The Code Book will forever alter your view of history, what drives it and how private your last e-mail really was.
In 1963 a schoolboy browsing in his local library stumbled across the world's greatest mathematical problem: Fermat's Last Theorem, a puzzle that every child can understand but which has baffled mathematicians for over 300 years. Aged just ten, Andrew Wiles dreamed that he would crack it. Wiles's lifelong obsession with a seemingly simple challenge set by a long-dead Frenchman is an emotional tale of sacrifice and extraordinary determination. In the end, Wiles was forced to work in secrecy and isolation for seven years, harnessing all the power of modern maths to achieve his childhood dream. Many before him had tried and failed, including a 18-century philanderer who was killed in a duel. An 18-century Frenchwoman made a major breakthrough in solving the riddle, but she had to attend maths lectures at the Ecole Polytechnique disguised as a man since women were forbidden entry to the school. A remarkable story of human endeavour and intellectual brilliance over three centuries, Fermat's Last Theorem will fascinate both specialist and general readers.
Some have seen philosophy embedded in episodes of The Simpsons; others have detected elements of psychology and religion. Simon Singh, bestselling author of Fermat's Last Theorem, The Code Book and The Big Bang, instead makes the compelling case that what The Simpsons' writers are most passionate about is mathematics. He reveals how the writers have drip-fed morsels of number theory into the series over the last twenty-five years; indeed, there are so many mathematical references in The Simpsons, and in its sister program, Futurama, that they could form the basis of an entire university course. Using specific episodes as jumping off points - from 'Bart the Genius' to 'Treehouse of Horror VI' - Simon Singh brings to life the most intriguing and meaningful mathematical concepts, ranging from pi and the paradox of infinity to the origins of numbers and the most profound outstanding problems that haunt today's generation of mathematicians. In the process, he introduces us to The Simpsons' brilliant writing team - the likes of Ken Keeler, Al Jean, Jeff Westbrook, and Stewart Burns - who are not only comedy geniuses, but who also hold advanced degrees in mathematics.This eye-opening book will give anyone who reads it an entirely new mathematical insight into the most successful show in television history.
A half century ago, a shocking Washington Post headline claimed that the world began in five cataclysmic minutes rather than having existed for all time; a skeptical scientist dubbed the maverick theory the Big Bang. In this amazingly comprehensible history of the universe, Simon Singh decodes the mystery behind the Big Bang theory, lading us through the development of one of the most extraordinary, important, and awe-inspiring theories in science.
The bestselling author of Fermat's Last Theorem and The Code Book tells the story of the brilliant minds that deciphered the mysteries of the Big Bang. A fascinating exploration of the ultimate question: how was our universe created? Albert Einstein once said: `The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.' Simon Singh believes geniuses like Einstein are not the only people able to grasp the physics that govern the universe. We all can. As well as explaining what the Big Bang theory actually is and why cosmologists believe it is an accurate description of the origins of the universe, this book is also the fascinating story of the scientists who fought against the established idea of an eternal and unchanging universe. Simon Singh, renowned for making difficult ideas much less daunting than they first seem, is the perfect guide for this journey. Everybody has heard of the Big Bang Theory. But how many of us can actually claim to understand it? With characteristic clarity and a narrative peppered with anecdotes and personal histories of those who have struggled to understand creation, Simon Singh has written the story of the most important theory ever.
In his first book since the bestselling Fermat's Enigma, Simon Singh offers the first sweeping history of encryption, tracing its evolution and revealing the dramatic effects codes have had on wars, nations, and individual lives. From Mary, Queen of Scots, trapped by her own code, to the Navajo Code Talkers who helped the Allies win World War II, to the incredible (and incredibly simple) logisitical breakthrough that made Internet commerce secure, The Code Book tells the story of the most powerful intellectual weapon ever known: secrecy.
It’s known as the science of secrecy. Cryptography: the encoding and decoding of private information. And it is history’s most fascinating story of intrigue and cunning. From Julius Caesar and his Caesar Cipher to the code used by Mary Queen of Scots and her conspiracy to the use of the Engima machine during the Second World War, Simon Singh follows the evolution of secret writing.
You may have watched hundreds of episodes of "The Simpsons" (and
its sister show "Futurama") without ever realizing that cleverly
embedded in many plots are subtle references to mathematics,
ranging from well-known equations to cutting-edge theorems and
conjectures. That they exist, Simon Singh reveals, underscores the
brilliance of the shows' writers, many of whom have advanced
degrees in mathematics in addition to their unparalleled sense of
Simon Singh, author of the bestsellers "Fermat's Enigma," "The Code Book," and "Big Bang," offers fascinating new insights into the celebrated television series "The Simpsons" That the show drip-feeds morsels of number theory into the minds of its viewers--indeed, that there are so many mathematical references in the show, and in its sister program, "Futurama," that they could form the basis of an entire university course. Recounting memorable episodes from "Bart the Genius" to "Homer3," Singh brings alive intriguing and meaningful mathematical concepts--ranging from the mathematics of pi and the paradox of infinity to the origin of numbers and the most profound outstanding problems that haunt today's generation of mathematicians. In the process, he illuminates key moments in the history of mathematics, and introduces us to "The Simpsons"' brilliant writing team--the likes of David X. Cohen, Al Jean, Jeff Westbrook, and Stewart Burns--all of whom have various advanced degrees in mathematics, physics, and other sciences. Based on interviews with the writers of "The Simpsons" and replete with images from the shows, facsimiles of scripts, paintings and drawings, and other imagery, "The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets "will give anyone who reads it an entirely new insight into the most successful show in television history.
Welcome to the world of alternative medicine. Prince Charles is a staunch defender and millions of people swear by it; most UK doctors consider it to be little more than superstition and a waste of money. But how do you know which treatments really heal and which are potentially harmful? Now at last you can find out, thanks to the formidable partnership of Professor Edzard Ernst and Simon Singh. Edzard Ernst is the world's first professor of complementary medicine, based at Exeter University, where he has spent over a decade analysing meticulously the evidence for and against alternative therapies.He is supported in his findings by Simon Singh, the well-known and highly respected science writer of several international bestsellers. Together they have written the definitive book on the subject. It is honest, impartial but hard-hitting, and provides a thorough examination and judgement of more than thirty of the most popular treatments, such as acupuncture, homeopathy, aromatherapy, reflexology, chiropractic and herbal medicine.In Trick or Treatment? the ultimate verdict on alternative medicine is delivered for the first time with clarity, scientific rigour and absolute authority.
Whether you are an ardent believer in alternative medicine, a skeptic, or are simply baffled by the range of services and opinions, this groundbreaking analysis lays to rest doubts and contradictions with authority, integrity, and clarity. Over thirty of the most popular treatments including acupuncture, homeopathy, aromatherapy, reflexology, chiropractic, and herbal medicines are examined for their benefits and potential dangers. What works and what doesn t? Who can you trust, and who is ripping you off? In its scrutiny of alternative and complementary cures, this book also strives to reassert the primacy of the scientific method as a means for determining public health practice and policy."
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