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Publisher's Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Humble Pi, written and read by Matt Parker. 

We would all be better off if everyone saw mathematics as a practical ally. Sadly, most of us fear maths and seek to avoid it. This is because mathematics doesn't have good 'people skills' - it never hesitates to bluntly point out when we are wrong. But it is only trying to help! Mathematics is a friend which can fill the gaps in what our brains can do naturally. 

Luckily, even though we don't like sharing our own mistakes, we love to listen to tales about what happens when maths errors make the everyday go horribly wrong. Matt Parker explores and explains near misses and mishaps with planes, bridges, the internet and big data as a way of showing us not only how important maths is but how we can use it to our advantage. This comedy of errors is a brilliantly told series of disaster stories with a happy ending.

©2019 Matt Parker (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

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What listeners say about Humble Pi

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Very enjoyable !

Very enjoyable book with great story's, both fun and educational. Matt's voice is unmatched.

1 person found this helpful

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Loved it

Great selection of small stories about mistakes being a part of what it means to be a human. I really onjoyed the performance and the math.

1 person found this helpful

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The best Mat(t/hs) book this year

Wanted to give it 3, 1 and 4 stars. But it's just too good. So instead I give it 6.28 stars in each category, rounded to the nearest possible star rating. Great job Mat(t/hs)!

1 person found this helpful

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_

if you've already watched his youtube material you will already have heard most of this.

2 people found this helpful

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Chuckles, chuckles and some serious maths!

Loved it! Full of chuckles, full of serious math!

Gives you a whole another perspective of the importance of getting math right when needed.

A lovely book for all-a horror book for engineers!

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Worth your time

A funny book that will make you stop and think sometimes about the things you take for certain.

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Audiobook is not the best way to read this

Even though my enjoyment of this book was mixed, I gave this a 4 because I feel it simply does not seem targeted at someone like me, and 3 would be unfair. If you're an engineer, or a programmer, you will likely enjoy parts that are about other fields, however ones from your own are dumbed down for a layperson to understand and their explanations may be quite boring. Aside from that, Matt sometimes goes into excruciating amount of numbers as a joke, but it gets old fast since he does it multiple times in the book. If you're reading a paper copy, you can probably skim the joke, but listening to an audiobook you're exposed to the "joke" for far too long. Also, holding many numbers in your head when listening is simply much harder than if you'd be able to cross reference them visually on paper/e-reader.
The research and content was solid, but the book could use a bit more editing.
Matt's reading is good, but his rhythm of speech could be more fluid - he makes a bit too many unnatural pauses when reading, making it painstakingly obvious he is in fact reading. It's not the natural Matt that you hear on his YouTube channel.

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Legendary book!

Such a good book and masterfully read! Please make an audiobook of Things To See And Do In The Fourth Dimension! Please!

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Started a bit slowly but gets into its stride-

Started a bit slowly but gets into its stride - has some very interesting examples

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Light and interesting read

Some of the stories are only interesting to a certain type of person, but Parker's excitement is infectious.

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  • Gustavo Guida
  • 04-02-19

As if maths on its own wasn't funny enough!

Matt does it again! whether you know him from YouTube or not this author can bring a funny twist to everything mathematical, and that means that he can add a fun twist to everything. This eye opening book will make you reflect on the deepest thoughts with a smile on your face and a nice LoL from time to time!
Thoroughly enjoyed it!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Julian Griffin
  • 08-03-20

Ineptitude, idiocy, bad luck. All interestesting.

. I am never ceased to be amazed how the blatantly obvious can so easily be missed. Just because a person is intelligent, doesn't mean they can not be blind on occasions. This book is well written and well read stories, and a stark reminder to us all as to the obviousness of hubris at the centre of mankind.
. Good adages to bear in mind for all programmers & designers are:
. Improbable is not the same as impossible. And:
. if it can be misunderstood, it will be. And finally'
. Just because it make no since to do it that way, does not mean it will not be done that way.
. All of these should be especially born in mind when picking up somebody else's work. And even for your own work, if you have to come back to it after a significant length of time.
🙃👍👌😇🙏

2 people found this helpful

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  • Benjamin baker
  • 12-04-20

Nerdy satisfaction 93% of the time

Only 12% unintelligible to the layman, 60% humour inducing to those within the nerdy front row

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tim
  • 12-02-20

Hilarious and informational

Couldn't stop listening, comedy gold and a gigantic reservoir of interesting and thought-provoking real word examples combined into one well-structured book. Learning and enjoying at the same time. Great!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-07-20

Not a mistake

Matt Parker is one of the best maths communicators out there.
And this is a hilarious listen.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Joseph Cannon
  • 09-05-20

Great Easy Listen!

I listened to this Audio Book whilst carrying out a bathroom renovation. It made the job more enjoyable, for instance when I had to clean the grout, I looked forward to it as I knew I’d be back into the Audio Book.
Matt is easy to listen to and the book isn’t complex. It’s full of interesting mistakes, some which I have heard from before due to my interest in Engineering and Physics.

Highly recommended to make a task more enjoyable.

1 person found this helpful

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  • euthyphro.
  • 09-04-20

Engaging math geekery

3.1415926 ... out of 5.

These eleven words have been written to fulfil the word count.

1 person found this helpful

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  • RRW
  • 07-31-20

Numerous take on mathematical mistakes

I’m no master in mathematics, far from it, I have a basic grasp of numbers, and the ability to make my bank account deteriorate quicker than a plane with no fuel. This book is written so well that complicated and sometimes absurd mathematics are made easy to understand without making you feel dumb in the process, quite the opposite, although I’m not sure education is at the forefront of this books agenda. Learning about the speed of light down cables, the Americans inability to conform to the rest of the worlds metric ways and how random isn’t all that random was both fascinating and educational. Great book, well read, well worth your time!

1 person found this helpful

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  • D'Arcy
  • 07-03-20

Maths Entertainment

A great compendium and explanation of how, why and when maths went wrong. Read by the author, in his entertaining and engaging style, thoroughly enjoyable!

1 person found this helpful

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  • KT Zee
  • 05-07-20

Very accessible and interesting

A wonderfully interesting and lighthearted ramble through common errors in mathematics that create real-world consequences. Even if you're "not good at maths" or "not a numbers person" this is well worth a listen - there is little actual maths in it, and nowhere where you need to know anything beforehand. The only flaw is that some of the numbers listed in the physical book are a little difficult to follow in audiobook format - I occasionally found myself writing things out to gain a fuller understanding.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-11-19

awesomeness

I joined audible just to listen to this book, Matt you are awesome. we need more

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-07-21

Maths is fun

He makes mathematics sound like more than just numbers and shows how it affects many unexpected things in our lives on a deep level with a focus on human stuff-ups. His sense of humour accompanying it is an acquired taste. Great book overall. Voice acting was also satisfactory.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-16-21

Making Maths, and its mistakes, unmistakable

First I'd like to thank the legendary Dr Karl (triple j, sleek geeks, and famousfor his very colourful shirts) for having Matt Parker on his podcast "Shirtloads of Science" and letting us know about this great book and audio book.

Matt Parker has a very dry sense of humour when it comes to explaining the failures of what most would consider a "perfect" field like mathematics.

The examples shown in the book are real time examples, explained in pretty much understandable language, and it has actually tweaked my interest in maths again.... 35 years after leaving school.

who would have thought that there was such a thing as "recreational mathematics"!

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  • Nathan Gibb
  • 12-16-20

Super Enjoyable

Really enjoyed this mix of math and storytelling to engage and learn about interesting situation.

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  • Rajesh
  • 07-25-20

Very enjoyable

Excellent content, and narration. I listened to it on my walks in the park. It is an easy and enjoyable listen

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-05-20

Very entertaining.

The narration was almost on par with that of an Engineer.
Thanks Matt, well read.

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  • E. Kang
  • 08-22-19

Entertaining, definitely not a Parker Audiobook.

I was initially worried that I would have heard all the examples before as I follow Matt Parker on YouTube. I'm glad to report that there's plenty of new information so even if you've watched all of Matt's videos, you won't be disappointed. It's the same Matt Parker voice and intonation you know and love!

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  • Bob
  • 06-27-19

Matt is an engaging speaker and author

Well worth the time, even though it presents itself as a maths book there is little need to visualise formulas

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  • Thijs van Berkel
  • 05-14-19

too much repetition of YouTube channel

great stories but too much repetition of information that the author shared on his YouTube channel

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-28-19

Laughed the whole way through.

I'm always amazed by the dumb things Matt can find to talk about. Bloody brilliant.