The number chosen by the England captain for his Real Madrid shirt is rich in mysterious connotations. But mathematician Marcus du Sautoy backs a new theory to explain why Beckham has plumped for number 23.
Human beings are famously prone to error, and proof-readers are, after all, only human. But who picks up the errors a proof-reader misses? John D. Barrow challenges readers to estimate the errors that aren't found from the errors that are.
To study a system, mathematicians begin by identifying its most crucial elements, and try to describe them in simple mathematical terms. As Phil Wilson tells us, this simplification is the essence of mathematical modelling.
The Riemann Hypothesis is probably the hardest unsolved problem in all of mathematics, and one of the most important. It has to do with prime numbers - the building blocks of arithmetic. Nick Mee, together with Sir Arthur C. Clarke, tells us about the patterns hiding inside numbers.