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### Summary

### Summary

In MATH WITH BAD DRAWINGS , Ben Orlin answers math's three big questions: Why do I need to learn this? When am I ever going to use it? Why is it so hard? The answers come in various forms-cartoons, drawings, jokes, and the stories and insights of an empathetic teacher who believes that math should belong to everyone.

Eschewing the tired old curriculum that begins in the wading pool of addition and subtraction and progresses to the shark infested waters of calculus (AKA the Great Weed Out Course), Orlin instead shows us how to think like a mathematician by teaching us a new game of Tic-Tac-Toe, how to understand an economic crisis by rolling a pair of dice, and the mathematical reason why you should never buy a second lottery ticket.

Every example in the book is illustrated with his trademark "bad drawings," which convey both his humor and his message with perfect pitch and clarity. Organized by unconventional but compelling topics such as "Statistics: The Fine Art of Honest Lying," "Design: The Geometry of Stuff That Works," and "Probability: The Mathematics of Maybe," MATH WITH BAD DRAWINGS is a perfect read for fans of illustrated popular science.

### Author Notes

Ben Orlin is the author of the blog Math With Bad Drawings. He also writes on a variety of topics related to math for The Atlantic, Slate, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, and Business Insider . He began his teaching career in Oakland, California in a charter high school populated by students from low-income, immigrant families, where test scores ranked as high as #4 among all high schools in the state of California. He taught at King Edward's School in Birmingham, England, and now lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.

@benorlin

### Table of Contents

Introduction | p. 1 |

How To Think Like A Mathematician | |

1 Ultimate Tic-Tac-Toe | p. 7 |

2 What Does Math Look Like to Students? | p. 20 |

3 What Does Math Look Like to Mathematicians? | p. 22 |

4 How Science and Math See Each Other | p. 30 |

5 Good Mathematician vs. Great Mathematician | p. 38 |

II Design: The Geometry Of Stuff That Works | |

6 We Built This City on Triangles | p. 52 |

7 Irrational Paper | p. 65 |

8 The Square-Cube Fables | p. 73 |

9 The Game of Dice | p. 89 |

10 An Oral History of the Death Star | p. 105 |

III Probability: The Mathematics Of Maybe | |

11 The 10 People You Meet in Line for the Lottery | p. 123 |

12 Children of the Coin | p. 141 |

13 What Does Probability Mean in Your Profession? | p. 151 |

14 Weird Insurance | p. 158 |

15 How to Break the Economy with a Single Pair of Dice | p. 178 |

IV Statistics: The Fine Art of Honest Lying | |

16 Why Not to Trust Statistics | p. 199 |

17 The Last .400 Hitter | p. 218 |

18 Barbarians at the Gate of Science | p. 231 |

19 The Scoreboard Wars | p. 249 |

20 The Book Shredders | p. 267 |

V On The CUSP: The Power of a Step | |

21 The Final Speck of Diamond Dust | p. 286 |

22 Bracketology | p. 299 |

23 One State, Two State, Red State, Blue State | p. 314 |

24 The Chaos of History | p. 329 |

Endnotes | p. 346 |

Acknowledgments | p. 368 |