Mathematics can be fun for everyone, and this book shows it. It grew out of the author's popularisation of mathematics via live, call-in TV shows and widely published articles. The questions, comments, and even the answers here come largely from the callers and readers themselves, and so the book covers the kind of mathematical problems that people are interested in, not those that professional mathematicians, writers or even publishers think people should be interested in. The book makes no attempt to fit any mould. Although written by a research mathematician, it goes where the callers and readers have directed it, over a wide range of topics and levels. Everyone paging through it will be captured by something of interest, whether they consider themselves interested in mathematics or not.
Part I. Time: 1. Does the sun rise in the east?; 2. Riddle o'clock; 3. Leap years; 4. The perfect calendar; 5. Where does the millenium begin?; Part II. Probabilities and possibilities: 6. Baby boys and girls, and world population; 7. Predicting the random; 8. The bible code and personal coincidences; 9. Incomparable dice and tic tac toe; 10. Crossing a rickety bridge at night; 11. Ideal coinage; 12. Infinitely many ping pong balls; 13. testing for aids; 14. Magician's kings and queens; 15. Presidents' names; 16. Presedential elections; Part III. Prime numbers anbd counting: 17. New largest prime numbers; 18. Four 4s.