Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea - Chapter 0, Null and Void, Chapter 1, Nothing Doing Summary & Analysis

Charles Seife
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The book opens with a story of a computer glitch that caused the USS Yorktown to come to a halt in 1997. A programming error had forced the computer to attempt to divide by zero which caused its systems to crash. For the author, Charles Seife, this is only a glimmer of the power of zero. No other number can do that much damage. And this is why cultures often protected themselves against zero and why philosophies were often destroyed by it. The book is the story of zero, from its ancient birth, to its threat to modern physics and of the history of social groups and institutions to deal with it. Zero is infinity's twin and invites similar fascination. Zero lies at the heart of many great battles and yet no one has...

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This section contains 584 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea Study Guide
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