DECISION MATHEMATICS 1. By John Hebborn, Keith Parramore amp; Joan Stephens. Heinemann. pound;12.99.
This is the latest addition to the Heinemann series covering the London A and AS syllabuses. The Module 1-5 syllabus is covered in a less intimidating way than many texts, some of which are also aimed at first-year undergraduates.
The main topics - graphs and algorithms applied to them, critical path analysis, network flows and linear programming - are presented logically. As the subject is still unfamiliar to a general mathematical audience, more contextual and historical material (rather than the spare format used in the companion volumes) could be of help.
It may be obvious to model the behaviour of objects connected by paths down which quantities of material can flow. After all, there is no system of any complexity, from a computer network to a subway to a factory, that is not organised on principles derived from the maths treated in this module. The obvious, though, is often worth stating. RC