The readings for each session are designed to be read after attending that session. For a listing of the topics discussed in each session, see here: (PDF)

Published Textbook

Buy at MIT Press Mahajan, Sanjoy. Street-Fighting Mathematics: The Art of Educated Guessing and Opportunistic Problem Solving. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780262514293.

The book is available as a free download (PDF) from MIT Press.

Textbook (Earlier Edition)

An earlier version of the textbook as one file may be found here: (PDF - 1.3 MB)

Title page and table of contents (PDF)

References (PDF)

1 Dimensions

Chapter 1 - Dimensions, pp. 3-12 (PDF)

Questions from lecture 1 (PDF)

2 Extreme cases

Chapter 2 - Extreme cases, pp. 13-26 (PDF)

Questions and answers from lecture 2 (PDF)

3 Application: drag

Chapter 2 - Extreme cases, pp. 26-30 (PDF)

Questions from lecture 3 (PDF)

4 More on drag  
5 Discretization Chapter 3 - Discretization, pp. 31-40 (PDF)
6 Application: pendulum period Chapter 3 - Discretization, pp. 41-44 (PDF)
7 Picture proofs Chapter 4 - Picture proofs, pp. 45-56 (PDF)
8 Taking out the big part Chapter 5 - Taking out the big part, pp. 57-79 (PDF)
9 Analogy Chapter 6 - Analogy, pp. 80-85 (PDF)
10 Application: operators Chapter 7 - Operators, pp. 86-90 (PDF)
11 Application: singing logarithms Handout - approximating logarithms using musical intervals (PDF)

Course Info

Learning Resource Types

assignment_turned_in Problem Sets with Solutions
menu_book Online Textbook