Reviews of Standard Mathematical Tables and Formulae

The following review is from the Journal of the American Statistical Association.

Telegraphic Review
CRC Standard Mathematical Tables and Formulae, 30th Ed.
Daniel Zwillinger, Editor-in-Chief. CRC Press, 1996, 780pp. $39.95

This compendium of mathematical topics is an extraordinarily valuable resource -- not just for its chapter on probability and statistics, but for all of the other mathematical topics frequently encountered by statisticians, both theoretical and applied. The Handbook contains extremely current topics as well as classical ones; notation is impressively consistent, aided by a List of Notations at the end. The book size and font type contribute to making it easy to read as a resource guide.

Chapter 7, ``Probability and Statistics'' (pp. 569-668), is written by W. C. Rinaman, C. Heil, M. T. Strauss, M. Mascagni, and M. Sousa. Topic include probability theory, distributions, queuing theory, markov chains, random number generation, control charts, classical parameter estimation, confidence intervals, tests of hypotheses, linear regression, analysis of variance, and signal processing. Together with the obligatory tables (including those for one- and two-sample Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests and SPearman's rank correlation), the coverage of each topic is necessarily brief to fit in 100 pages, but the authors have been wise in their selection of topics. Occasional specialized topics of popular importance are included such as sequential testing (SPRT), wavelets, and Kalman filtering. The brevity is sufficient to serve as a reminder to those familiar with he concepts and a taste to those who are not.

The other chapters in this handbook are: 1. Analysis; 2. Algebra; 3. Discrete Mathematics; 4. Geometry; 5. Continuous Mathematics; 6. Special Functions; 8. Scientific Computing; 9. Financial Analysis; 10. Miscellaneous (units, calendars, AMS classification scheme, electronic resources, etc.). Depending on their field of interest, statisticians are likely to find some concepts in each of these topics to be useful at some point. My one disappointment is the lack of a bibliography, but perhaps this is typical of a handbook. KK

The following review appeared in the UMAP Journal, Volume 17, number 4, Winter 1996, 1992, page 437

Zwillinger, Daniel (ed.). 1996. Standard Mathematical Tables and Formulae. 30th edition. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. 821 pp, $39.95. ISBN 0-8493-2479-3.

If you were a mathematics student before the advent of scientific calculators, chances are you used and frequently carried your own copy of an earlier edition of this book. Although it covered many topics, a primary reason to carry it was for trig and log tables. Once scientific calculators arrived, these tables were no longer necessary or convenient.

The book reviewed here is a completely new edition designed for an era of calculators and handheld computers. The reference in the title to tables is now a little misleading. The trig tables, for example, not take up all of one page. The book is not a one-volume encyclopedia of mathematics. Its ten chapters treat analysis, algebra, discrete mathematics, geometry, continuous mathematics, special functions, probability and statistics, scientific computing, financial analysis, and miscellanea. Each chapter has its own table of contents. The format and printing are all easy on the eye. If you considered the CRC book of math tables a relic of the past, you might want to check out the 30th edition and reappraise.

James M. Cargal, Mathematics Dept., Troy State University Montgomery, P.O. Drawer 4419, Montgomery, AL 36103;

The following review appeared in Choice, Volume 34, No. 2

CRC Standard Mathematical Tables and Formulae, ed. by Daniel Zwillinger. 30th ed. CRC Press, 1996. 812p bibl index afp ISBN 0-8493-2479-3, $39.95

Since its inception in the early 1930's CRC Mathematics Tables has been the first mathematics handbook of choice when working in mathematics, engineering, or the physical sciences. No longer a mere book of tables extracted from the Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (71st ed., CH, Sep'95; 75th ed., CH, Mar'95), it has become a true handbook. Its formal name belies its content: it includes expository sections, definitions, directory information, charts, graphics, and historical sketches in addition to numeric tables and formulas. This 30th edition will only continue and extend the fine reputation of its predecessors. New or reworked sections are partial differential equations, scientific computing, integral equations, group theory, and graph theory. Sections not reworked are updated. For example, uniform resource locators (URLs) are included for pertinent Internet Web sites. The index has been expanded and improved. Graphics are good, with three-dimensional objects presented with good shading. A must for academic libraries, most public and high school libraries, and professionals' personal bookcases. Undergraduates though professionals; two-year technical program students. W. R. Lee, Iowa State University