I have been working my way slowly through this classic FP book for the last couple of months. Bird’s style is rigorously mathematical but very readable. He is interested in developing programs algebraically. Quite different from my own aproach of hacking away for a bit and then seeing if it works ;-) This is a fantastic book. Apparently the first edition is even better — I’ve heard Erik Meijer call it one of the best books he ever read. And I have the new edition, Thinking Functionally with Haskell in my in-pile.
Tells the story of two mathematical pioneers, Ã‰milie Du ChÃ¢telet and Mary Somerville. Despite growing up in societies where educating women was viewed with at least suspicion and more usually downright hostility, both women were able to make impportant contributions to mathematical discourse. Du ChÃ¢telet by translating Newton’s PhilosophiÃ¦ Naturalis Principia Mathematica into French and by her work (sometimes with her lover, Voltaire) writing what we would now call popular science; Somerville in particular for her Mechanism of the Heavens but also for her various mathematical and scientific papers and books. Readable, entertaining and inspiring in equal measures and with an excellent appendix to explain the basics of some of the mathematics.