Mathematician Amir D. Aczel visited Google's Cambridge, MA office to discuss his book, "Finding Zero: A Mathematician's Odyssey to Uncover the Origins of Numbers". The invention of numerals is perhaps the greatest abstraction the human mind has ever created. The story of how and where we got these numerals has for thousands of years been shrouded in mystery. "Finding Zero" is the saga of Dr. Aczel’s lifelong obsession: to find the original sources of our numerals. His journey takes him to India, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and ultimately into the wilds of Cambodia.
Amir Dan Aczel was an Israeli-born American lecturer in mathematics and the history of mathematics and science, and an author of popular books on mathematics and science.
While on this odyssey, Aczel meets a host of fascinating characters: academics in search of truth, jungle trekkers looking for adventure, surprisingly honest politicians, shameless smugglers, and treacherous archaeological thieves—who finally reveal where our numbers come from.Find out more