Philip J. Davis
Philip J. Davis (January 2, 1923[3] – March 13, 2018) was an American academic applied mathematician.
Philip J. Davis  

Born  Lawrence, Massachusetts, U.S.  January 2, 1923
Died  March 13, 2018 95)  (aged
Nationality  American 
Alma mater  Harvard University 
Awards  Chauvenet Prize (1963) Lester R. Ford Award (1982)[1][2] 
Scientific career  
Fields  Mathematics 
Institutions  Brown University 
Doctoral advisor  Ralph Philip Boas, Jr. 
Doctoral students  Frank Deutsch Jeffery J. Leader 
Davis was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts. He was known for his work in numerical analysis and approximation theory, as well as his investigations in the history and philosophy of mathematics. He earned his degrees in mathematics from Harvard University (SB, 1943; PhD, 1950, advisor Ralph P. Boas, Jr.), and his final position was Professor Emeritus at the Division of Applied Mathematics at Brown University.
He served briefly in an aerodynamics research position in the Air Force in World War II before joining the National Bureau of Standards (now the National Institute of Standards and Technology). He became Chief of Numerical Analysis there and worked on the wellknown Abramowitz and Stegun Handbook of Mathematical Functions before joining Brown in 1963.
He was awarded the Chauvenet Prize for mathematical writing in 1963 for an article on the gamma function,[4] and won numerous other prizes, including being chosen to deliver the 1991 Hendrick Lectures of the MAA (which became the basis for his book Spirals: From Theodorus to Chaos). He was a frequent invited lecturer and authored several books. Among the best known are The Mathematical Experience (with Reuben Hersh), a popular survey of modern mathematics and its history and philosophy; Methods of Numerical Integration (with Philip Rabinowitz),[5] long the standard work on the subject of quadrature; and Interpolation and Approximation, still an important reference in this area.
For The Mathematical Experience (1981), Davis and Hersh won a National Book Award in Science.[6][loweralpha 1]
Davis also wrote an autobiography, The Education of a Mathematician; some of his other books include autobiographical sections as well. In addition, he published works of fiction. His bestknown book outside the field of mathematics is The Thread: A Mathematical Yarn (1983, 2nd ed. 1989), which "has raised Digression into a literary form" (Gerard Piel); it takes off from the name of the Russian mathematician Tschebyscheff, and in the course of explaining why he insists on that "barbaric, Teutonic, nonstandard orthography" (in the words of a reader of Interpolation and Approximation who wrote him to complain) he digresses in many amusing directions.
Davis died on March 13, 2018 at the age of 95.[7]
Publications
 Unity and Disunity and Other Mathematical Essays, American Math Society, (2015)
Notes

This was the 1983 award for paperback Science.
From 1980 to 1983 in National Book Award history there were dual hardcover and paperback awards in most categories, and several nonfiction subcategories including General Nonfiction. Most of the paperback awardwinners were reprints, including this one.
References
 Paul R. Halmos – Lester R. Ford Awards, Mathematical Association of America
 "Are There Coincidences in Mathematics?" by Philip Davis
 Gazette  Australian Mathematical Society, Vols. 2526 (1998), p. 141.
 Davis, Philip J. (1959). "Leonhard Euler's Integral: An Historical Profile of the Gamma Function". Amer. Math. Monthly. 66 (10): 849–869. doi:10.2307/2309786. JSTOR 2309786.
 Barnhill, Robert E. (1976). "Review: Methods of numerical integration, by Philip J. Davis and Philip Rabinowitz" (PDF). Bull. Amer. Math. Soc. 82 (4): 538–539. doi:10.1090/s000299041976140876.
 "National Book Awards – 1983". National Book Foundation. Retrieved 20120307.
 "Philip J. Davis, Professor Emeritus". Brown University.
External links
 Personal web site at Brown University.
 Official web site at Brown University.
 Interview at SIAM
 Philip J. Davis at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
 Bibliography