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Euclid's Window Audiobook

Euclid's Window: The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace

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Publisher's Summary

Through Euclid's Window Leonard Mlodinow brilliantly and delightfully leads us on a journey through five revolutions in geometry, from the Greek concept of parallel lines to the latest notions of hyperspace. Here is an altogether new, refreshing, alternative history of math revealing how simple questions anyone might ask about space -- in the living room or in some other galaxy -- have been the hidden engine of the highest achievements in science and technology.

Based on Mlodinow's extensive historical research; his studies alongside colleagues such as Richard Feynman and Kip Thorne; and interviews with leading physicists and mathematicians such as Murray Gell-Mann, Edward Witten, and Brian Greene, Euclid's Window is an extraordinary blend of rigorous, authoritative investigation and accessible, good-humored storytelling that makes a stunningly original argument asserting the primacy of geometry. For those who have looked through Euclid's Window, no space, no thing, and no time will ever be quite the same.

©2009 Leonard Mlodinow; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (384 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Catherine 08-30-15
    Catherine 08-30-15 Member Since 2013
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    "A lovely math history book "

    It is so rare to find a math history book on audio. I found the first half far more enlightening than the last, and enjoyed his jokes and personal narratives woven in as examples. His treatment of hyperbolic geometry was particularly noteworthy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Luis Ricardo Suazo 06-29-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Simply great!"

    Fantastic combination of history and mathematical insight, told in a very engaging and humorous fashion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    HandsomePete Philadelphia, PA 06-05-15
    HandsomePete Philadelphia, PA 06-05-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A nonstop geometry thrill ride"

    I paid for my whole seat but found out quickly that I would only use the edge or approximately one third of the area.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian 05-18-15
    Brian 05-18-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Good but not great"

    Maybe better as a normal book. As an audio book, it sometimes is annoying when the presenter rambles off long formulae or numbers (which is thankfully not too often).

    The topic appears to skip around a bit and the change in historical interpretation of geometry from high-school math to mind-bending modern physics is offered mostly as a biography of those working on these topics over the past 2,500 years.

    Overall: good but not great

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer 05-30-14
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    "Great explanation of math evo based on geometry"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Euclid's Window to be better than the print version?

    Haven't read the print version.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Euclid's Window?

    Seeing Einstein's vision of curved space and non-Euclidean geometry based on the evolution of math from the triangle.


    Which character – as performed by Robert Blumenfeld – was your favorite?

    not applicable


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    Some great background and stories about how math developed from the Geometry of the Ancient Greeks, through non-Euclidean Geometry of Gauss, Riemann, etc., which set the stage for the math of Relativity and Quantum theories. Fascinating listen on audiobook. Not many charts or graphs, so you wouldn't miss much by listening in the car.
    And you can download the pdf of accompanying illustrations anyway.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Boiling Springs, PA, United States 12-01-13
    Ken Boiling Springs, PA, United States 12-01-13 Member Since 2015
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    "Was this really the same author???"

    I really enjoyed Mlodinow's "The Drunkard's Walk" and I do recommend it to anyone. So it was a big surprise when I listened to "Euclid's Window." This book was very uneven. There were good chapters and weak chapters. Also, I felt like he was trying too hard to be humorous or "folksy." As I listened, I got the feeling that this was a much earlier book than "The Drunkard's Walk" and when I checked the publication dates, it was true. Mlodinow's "voice" is much better in his later writing compared to this book. The material here is good, for the most part, but how it is presented needed the firm recommendations of a good editor who might have made it more consistent and confident.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R.M. 10-25-13
    R.M. 10-25-13
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    "Witty History of Math"
    If you could sum up Euclid's Window in three words, what would they be?

    Witty Historical Survey


    What other book might you compare Euclid's Window to and why?

    Biography of Albert Einstein by Walter Isaacson would be a good companion to Euclid's Window. The historical perspective of Einstein's life and especially the detail about his difficulties with developing the Theory of Relativity through the politics and antisemitism help provide the skeleton of history provided in Euclid's Window with the fullness of flesh.


    What does Robert Blumenfeld bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Blumenfeld's intelligible diction was reminiscent of a professors monologue with the inflection of entertainment and the confidence indicating a familiarity with the work. He was a perfect choice for this entertaining historical writing.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I particularly enjoyed the author's use of his two sons in demonstrating complex ideas. One particular scene is of Alexi as Einstein and Nicholas as Heisenberg in a heated discussion over whether small regions of space are flat if it is devoid of mass. Alexi says it should be but Nicholas taunts him with his principle of uncertainty causing fluctuations of gravity that belie flatness of space.


    Any additional comments?

    I am going to listen to the book a second time. I like the chronological approach to the development of the geometry. Truly it presents math as a natural philosophy based on the world and a desire to understand it. In the next reading of the text I am going to stop periodically to learn more in depth the concepts and supplement the reading with other writings.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maggie McMeekin Arlington Heights, IL, US 05-18-13
    Maggie McMeekin Arlington Heights, IL, US 05-18-13 Member Since 2012

    I am a 27 year old nurse pursuing a nurse practitioner degree. My favorite book genres are: fantasy, science fiction, medicine and sociology

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    "Unexpectedly funny one-liners accompany the facts"
    Any additional comments?

    I love non fiction and learning about something new. I was very surprised at how clever the writing was in this book. Some one-liners downright had me laughing out loud. At one point, my brother (22 years old and a law student without much math or science in his background) sat through an hour long car ride in which I listened to this audio book, and even from a random point in the book, he found himself exclaiming in surprise at some interesting facts he learned, and laughing at the clever jokes and side comments.

    I have to say that I learned something, but furthermore enjoyed learning it. It didn't feel tremendously technical or too plodding and long. It also explores the contributing social circumstances and history of the various mathematicians and scientists mentioned within its pages, which helps create a broad knowledge base on the topics at hand and about the people behind the discoveries as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John RENO, NV, United States 03-19-13
    John RENO, NV, United States 03-19-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Great Performance"

    Making Hyperbolic Geometry fun and interesting to the general reader deserves a great review. In the next edition replace "Jesuits" and "Franciscans" with "Benedictines" and give examples of (actual) modern geometrical reasoning in side boxes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rupe Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-12-13
    Rupe Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-12-13 Member Since 2005
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    "Really Loved it!!"
    What did you love best about Euclid's Window?

    I really love both history and mathematics, so this was the perfect read for me.

    In college, I was so focused on problem solving, I wasn't able to step away from the text to really delve into the story behind the Geometry. This read affords me that chance and has me going back to some of my old text and rediscovering what I really love about mathematics.

    Very much recommended for anyone who loves history and is fascinated by mathematics ;-)!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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