Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Einstein, Picasso, Agatha and Chaplin

I received an email today from Regina Goncalves, author of the book, 'Einstein, Picasso, Agatha and Chaplin'. I haven't read the book, but thought that I might as well post the email here in case anyone wants to read it. Or if anyone has read it, what do you think of it? Sounds interesting indeed, and well it's been added to my ever growing 'to read list'. The email:

"I am teacher of math and, actually I am writing books that help me to share my teachings: math + art + Science and history. It is a way to demystify those subjects

I would like to present to you the series of books entitled, "Caius Zip – The Time Traveller," The main idea behind the "CAIUS ZIP – The Time Traveller" series is to show the history made by great men and how mathematics and other subjects were important in their decisions. Caius Zip is a young man that participates in these discoveries and in the great battles. In each adventure, he acquires maturity and learns that to get out of trouble he must use his most important ability that he unknowingly uses very well: the power of deduction.

The first book, " Einstein, Picasso, Agatha and Chaplin:, How to explain the theory of relativity, cubism, travelling in time and unmask a murderer " has been published


Caius Zip, the young time traveller, arrives at Paris in 1905. The turn of the 20th century is a period that sizzles with ideas and realizations and the Universe is about to be contemplated as it never was before.

In this fiction, Einstein was resting in Paris before his innovating Theory of Relativity enlightened him. At that same time, Picasso was just starting on his idea of breaking with conventional perspective.

Both characters seek the same concept: space-time relation. The encounter between art and science is finally possible by means of a limitless imagination.

There are the descriptions of interesting places of the belle époque in Paris and the memorable dialogue between Caius, Einstein, Picasso, Agatha, André Salmon, the poet and Getrude Stein, the sponsor of the novice Picasso, at the Spanish painter's atelier on how art, literature, science, travelling in time and mystery are intertwined.

Caius penetrates the birth of the theory of relativity and cubism and also manages to solve a murder mystery with the help of his two teenage friends, Agatha Christie, with her investigative mind and Charlie Chaplin, who provides a touch of magic to this surprising work of fiction.

After all and as Einstein once said: "The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed".

See a passage from the book in: http://www.caiuszip.com/relativiting.htm "

If only my best friend Newton was part of the plot! I'm being serious... without knowing, a while back when my little sister used to play online games, I had changed her password to Newton! [The clue was something to do with Newton's law, and well she obviously didn't guess it!]. Maths and fiction, two things which I seem to like have joined forces (ahem forces... geddit...*)!


I'd also like to take this opportunity to mention other books that are worth reading.

HOW TO SOLVE IT- G POLYA. Yes that's deliberately in capital letters- not to be annoying, but for erm... 'effect'. I have yet to finish this book [did I mention that I'm a slow^(infinity) reader!], however reading through has indeed been interesting. If I may quote the following list from the book:
  • Understanding the problem
  • Devising the plan
  • Carrying out the plan
  • Looking back- CHECK!
That is basically the 'How to Solve it list'. I will probably be giving my thoughts in more detail of the book, but it's a must read. Honestly, whilst I read bits of it and recognised that certain teachers and lecturers had done or said certain things to me (three guesses as to which teachers and lecturers!), I just had to sit back and pause in 'awe' if that's the right word. It was quite amazing how in the book, during the dialogue between the teacher and student, I seemed to hear my teachers saying them same things to me (although if I was the student, instead of the dots it'd be a lame joke!)! I guess you could say this made me appreciate them teachers and lecturers more. I mean where have I heard CHECK before? I guess I'm still in 'awe'. It was a weird experience, reading the dialogue and hearing it in my head at the same time. I truly am lucky to have been taught by great teachers. :) One can hope that I meet many more. It's easy, when asked a question, to answer with the answer. However, to answer a question with a question, which causes the questioner to see some light, well that's the hard job. [It's not my fault- the dialogue in my head won't shut up!]

I'd rather not delve too much into that book here, but I'd definitely recommend it. I know what I'm going to be buying for my own birthday (hehe)!

The other book which I'd recommend reading is Letters to a Young Mathematician. I can't remember (oops!) whether or not I've mentioned this before, but whilst reading that book, I had moments where I felt I was reading about myself! Well you know what I mean- it seemed that the book had been written for me. The questions I was asking, Meg had been asking! You can find more about it here. (written by Ian Stewart).

There are many more books out that I have yet to read. You see I'm quite embarrassed that now I have quite a few maths book, I'm taking my sweet time reading them! That's why I have yet to post my maths library! You'll probably be hearing more about that library after I've read the Polya book, but don't hold your breath!

The bitter taste has finally left my mouth (thankfully!). However, unfortunately that means I'll probably be posting more! [At 3am that is.... ahahaha bom bom]**. Oh and on the maths clan front, I have yet to think of a name, however I have realised that it doesn't have to have the initials 'mss'. It can be anything in the whole wide world. So... what would you name your team? (something mathsy of course!). I was thinking 'The Archimedes' but that's what the Cambridge math soc is called I believe. Something original would be nice, but what I don't know? At the moment I have joined some other clan, but I'm eager to make my own maths clan. I beg thee for ideas for a name which will radiate evilness and power and ... oops wrong audience! I meant a name which will inspire and motivate others to kill the chimera in the name of maths! Is that better. Trust me the Chimera are truly... evil... imagine stats and you'll see chimera. Well that's if you don't like stats. Don't like mechanics? It's because of the Chimera, and anything else in which you find evil in maths is the Chimera! (Dare I say that there is a stats page...!)

If this little paragraph has not inspired any ideas, then I have failed mankind. The chimera will take over the world, and I... well they did offer me a nice company car and a handsome salary... (Still thinking? Anything cool and radiating of maths will be nice..., I'll promise not to make stupid 'paragraphs like the above one then!). *turns page* I'll be back.

*Sorry, I seem to have banged my head lately! I think it's because results day is looming, and well I've eaten. Oh- actually I've eaten an apple! That's weird, I think apples do something to me since I haven't eaten one in ages (seriously!) and haven't felt this stupid for a while! I must buy me some more apples.
** Erm.. Basil Brush, you know him right? My hero that fox is.... ok, you got me. We sit on the sofa together and try to think of lame lame jokes. You must be laughing now? Come on, laughing at how hard we've been trying to sound lame... no? Well I guess that means back to the drawing board for us with the apples! I should shut up now shouldn't I, but ..... but... 'somebody stop me from smokin' {the Mask used to (sniff!) say that, but I'll change it to, 'somebody stop me from talkin' bom bom! Beans is back in the house. [that's me trying to sound 'cool', failing miserably I suppose!]

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