Book The Daring Invention of Logarithm Tables
Over centuries, John Napier was considered the sole inventor of the logarithm concept. Based on this notion, he created a large table of logarithms that drastically reduced computational effort for multiplication and division of numbers.
However, independently and at the same time if not earlier, Jost Bürgi created a table of logarithms that required less construction effort, yet was more precise and just as effective in use as Napier’s.
The strange claim that Napier was the sole inventor came to be because Bürgi didn’t publish his invention in a timely fashion, and then only by a table and terse handwritten instructions for its use.
That situation changed in the middle of the 19th century, when Bürgi’s became more widely known. But even after that point in time there have been debates whether Bürgi should be considered an independent inventor of the logarithm concept.
These strange developments got our attention a few years ago, and we began to investigate the work of Bürgi and Napier. The results just appeared in the book The Daring Invention of Logarithm Tables. The main conclusion is that, without any doubt, Bürgi and Napier are independent co-inventors of logarithms.