Euler, the Secrets of Applied Mathematics and Inverse Problems - our latest round-up of books by Oxford Mathematicians

'Euler's Pioneering Equation' has been compared to a Shakespearean Sonnet. But even if you don't buy that, Robin Wilson's book does much to show how an 18th century Swiss mathematician managed to bring together the five key constants in the subject: the number 1, the basis of our counting system; the concept of zero, which was a major development in mathematics, and opened up the idea of negative numbers; π an irrational number, the basis for the measurement of circles; the exponential e, associated with exponential growth and logarithms; and the imaginary number i, the square root of -1, the basis of complex numbers. Some achievement.

We are always being told that mathematics impacts every corner of our lives -  our security, our climate, even our very selves. Want a quick summary of how? Alain Goriely's Applied Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction does just that, laying out the basics of the subject and exploring its range and potential. If you want to know how cooking a turkey and medical imaging are best explained by mathematics (or even if you don't) this is an excellent read.

By contrast Yves Capdeboscq together with colleague Giovanni S. Alberti from Genoa has published 'Lectures on Elliptic Methods For Hybrid Inverse Problems based on a series of 2014 lectures. Targeting the Graduate audience, this work tackles one of the most important aspects of the mathematical sciences: the Inverse Problem. In the words of the authors "Inverse problems correspond to the opposite (of a direct problem), namely to find the cause which generated the observed, measured result." 

Click here for our last literary selection including Prime Numbers, Networks and Russian Mathematicians.