The first line of the book perked my interest
"Some of the great mathematicians killed themselves. The lore is that their theories drove them mad, though I suspect they were just lonely, isolated by what they knew."Of course this line, reminded me of my favorite mathematician, EEE. I hope that he is just a little mad, and I fervently hope that he is not lonely.
In the second chapter, she went into a discussion on infinity and the theory of Ludwig Phillip Cantor called transfinite arithmetic. I thought I was getting along fine with the ideas, countable infinite numbers, infinite rational numbers, infinite irrational numbers, and then the bombshell, some sets of infinite numbers are larger than others. HUH? how can this be? Of course she gave an explanation:
"Cantor realized that the set of irrational numbers was infinite in a way that was so huge as to be uncountable. They cannot be represented by one integer divided by another and some require an infinitely long desciption, such as pi or the golden ratio. An uncountable infinity could never be put into one-to-one correspondence with a countable infinity and so the irrational numbers must be of a larger infinity than the natural numbers"And this is where I got lost. reminding me why I preferred political science as my undergradute course. I will still read the book, hopefully finish and increase my understanding of mathematics and the universe. Hopefully, this book will not drive me mad. If you can find the book, maybe you can join me in this adventure.