Do Dice Play God? The Mathematics of Uncertainty

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Ian Stewart has a knack for untangling complex mathematical concepts and laying them out for casual readers in interesting ways, teasing out the curiosities and real-world applications that are often left out of standard math instruction. I mean, we all learned how to calculate percentages, but has anyone ever properly explained to you how they’re mishandled in court cases with horrifying results? Or how poorly interpreted lab studies can lead to disasters like thalidomide?

Do Dice Play God? explores how astrology, astronomy, statistics, and probability all converge and interact in terms of how humans interpret the concept of chance. Whether it’s climate and weather analysis (and misunderstandings) or how natural tendencies of belief and bias in the brain can be encouraged and manipulated, this book not only demysticizes the science of calculating probability, but teaches the reader how to apply it correctly.

Stewart’s books are always engaging, but sometimes the reading experience gets bogged down in formulae; that’s not the case here, where Stewart couches many high-end concepts in relatable metaphors and scenarios, keeping everything accessible for the average reader.

Forever reminding readers that knowledge requires vigilance, Stewart has offered his best work yet with this one. Dice may not play God, but you can keep them from playing you.


Reviewed By:

Author Ian Stewart
Star Count 4/5
Format Hard
Page Count 304 pages
Publisher Basic Books
Publish Date 2019-09-03
ISBN 9781541699472
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue December 2019
Category Science & Nature
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