Item description for Understanding and Calculating the Odds: Probability Theory Basics and Calculus Guide for Beginners, with Applications in Games of Chance and Everyday Life by Catalin Barboianu...
Man's daily life is full of decisional situations. Whether we have math skills or not, we frequently estimate and compare probabilities, sometimes without realizing it, especially when making decisions. But probabilities are not just simple numbers attached objectively or subjectively to events, as they perhaps look, and their calculus and usage is highly predisposed to qualitative or quantitative errors in the absence of proper knowledge. That is why a book explaining the probability concept and its interpretations and applications for non-mathematicians is a necessity. This is an enlightening journey through the world of probability theory. Its multiple goals are to help the reader understand what probability really means, to teach the reader how to rigorously perform and apply the probability calculus, even without a solid mathematical background, and to stimulate the reader to go deeper into the notions involved. In the first part, the author tries to build a clear image of the probability concept by reconstructing its mathematical definition step by step through its constituent notions. It starts with a general presentation of the conceptual ensemble word - definition - notion - model any theory is based on when trying to reproduce reality. Then, the probability notion is defined and explained starting from the classical definition to the definition for the countable case; then probability is presented as a limit and as a measure. This book presents not only the mathematical concept of probability, but also its philosophical aspects, the relativity of probability and its applications and even the psychology of probability. All explanations are made in a comprehensible manner and are supported with suggestive examples from nature and daily life and even with challenging math paradoxes. After these points are laid out the math chapter follows. It contains all the notions and principal theoretical results that ground Probability Theory, starting with fundamental notions like Sets, Functions, Boole algebras, and Sequences, and continuing with Measure Theory Basics - Tribes, Borel sets, Measurable spaces, and Measure, ending with Field of events, Sigma-fields, Probability, Conditional probability, Discrete random variables, Classical probability distributions, and Convergence. And, of course, it includes all important theorems and results dealing with them. A special section is dedicated to Combinatorics and combinatorial calculus. Readers with no minimal mathematical background may choose to skip this chapter because the teaching material is structured for developing probability calculus skills based on algorithmic procedures. This is the subject of the chapter titled Beginners' Calculus Guide, in which the reader is taught to apply the properties of probability and to perform calculations in practical applications. The skills acquired here can be practiced on the more than 200 solved and unsolved problems and exercises in the book. Gamblers have a dedicated chapter, which is a large collection of applied probability results covering most of the gaming situations from the major games of chance: Slots, Roulette, Blackjack and Texas Hold'em Poker. The author brings important contributions to the decision theory, offering in the last chapter a mathematical model on which to base proof that a probability-based strategy is theoretically optimum, which has immediate applications in games as well as decisional situations from daily life. Everyone should find something of interest here: philosophers and mathematicians may focus on the sections on philosophical matters of the probability model and decisional matters, students and non-mathematicians can find solid A to Z teaching material about Probability Theory and the practical person can find all the tools needed to apply and perform probability calculus without a teacher.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1.25" Width: 6" Height: 9" Weight: 1.3 lbs.
Release Date May 21, 2006
ISBN 9738752019 ISBN13 9789738752016
Reviews - What do customers think about Understanding and Calculating the Odds: Probability Theory Basics and Calculus Guide for Beginners, with Applications in Games of Chance and Everyday Life?
Big problems in Roulette City Nov 1, 2007
The math appears correct dispite many typos which become magnified because the english usage is awkward. HOWEVER, the section concerning roulette is completely off base. The author uses an incorrect payout of 40 to 1 for single number wagers rather than the correct payoff of 35 to 1. This is an unforgiveable error and yields totally incorrect results. This casts a pall over the other gaming analyses which I haven't the patience to evaluate. Someone must correct this (and possibly others) for the book to be useful; otherwise it must be discarded.
Average introduction to probability Feb 9, 2007
This book covers the basics in probability including boole algebras, measure spaces, law of large numbers, combinatorics, discrete random variables and bayesian probability.
The first 118 pages is basically a short story on probability summarizing the next 200 pages. The problem is the author uses an unnecessarily complex writing style enough to frustrate any individual whose first language is english what to say of others. Regardless, after a few pages you get used to it.
The mathematical chapter is really not mathematical at all. It is simply a statement of definitions, properties and theorems with no justification ( proofs ) and only a spattering of justification.
The prize however, is the problems and algorithms with plenty of solved examples. This has it's merits but at some points the author solves problems by a circuitous and often confusing route. There are other much simpler ways to solve these problems.
Regardless, I relished the fact that the author gives a general problem solving method rather than present formulas to memorize. This enhances intuition and understanding.
Finally a readable math book! Jul 4, 2006
It covers fundamentals well, easy to read, good variety of problems, nice examples, philosophic sections are interesting. It has everything. I've never seen a probability book with such good examples and algorithms of solving. Most books on probability give you all of the equations, but they don't really tell you how to apply them to real situations. It is the book on probability that I have been looking for. Great.
Excellent primer and not only Jun 23, 2006
This is the book to start with and to finish with. In this big book (in size and amount of information) you will find all you need to know about both theoretical and applied probability. The author made the text comprehensible for all categories of readers: laymen, students and advanced. And the result is a masterly exposition with amazing clarity. I read a lot of textbooks on this subject, but I found no one to touch on all basic issues in such a teachable manner. Each subject has a short, concise and to the point exposition. Great job and a very useful product.