Counting: Humans, History and the Infinite Lives of Numbers

Wardhaugh, Benjamin

What has counting meant to different cultures and different individuals?

In this book, historian and mathematician Benjamin Wardhaugh will explore stories from all over the world and from every period of human history, from Ife numerologists to Antarctic scientists; from Egyptian kings to Chinese peasants.

It will display the ways counting has been continually reinvented over time, through language, writing, counters and machines. It will illustrate the ways counting has shaped culture, and culture has shaped counting, culminating in the vast changes of the digital revolution, when digitization – the process of translating things into numbers – has transformed the human world over the last few decades.