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kaktusas2598

Are Dummies books series for maths good?

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kaktusas2598    953
I want to extend my mathematicks knowledge on topics such as Trigonometry, ALgebra and learn new ones such as Linear ALgebra and Calculus. I want to be game programmer and i want to learn this things... I saw there are many "for dummies" like books about mathematics.. Are they good? Is it worth buying them? Do you know any better books?

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slynk    144
Get this instead :P

[url="http://www.amazon.com/Mathematics-Physics-Programmers-Game-Development/dp/1584503300"]http://www.amazon.com/Mathematics-Physics-Programmers-Game-Development/dp/1584503300[/url]

or something similar. I love that book.

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slynk    144
Sort of. It's in psuedocode so that it can be language independent but yes. It even goes into explanation as to how the computer handles ints and floats in memory. And it covers AI, search, and Collision techniques as well. I use it all the time.

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hotdogwater    103
It's not a book, but I found the Linear Algebra lectures by a well-known MIT professor (on iTunes U) very helpful when I took the class in college last year. In fact, I think I learned more from the iTunes vids than I did from my own professor. :) I thought it was very well explained and he makes the subject much easier to understand.

[url="http://itunes.apple.com/itunes-u/linear-algebra/id354869137#ls=1"]http://itunes.apple....d354869137#ls=1[/url]

Edit: here's a bit about the professor on Wikipedia:
[url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilbert_Strang"]http://en.wikipedia..../Gilbert_Strang[/url]

[quote][font=sans-serif][size=2][/size][/font][font=sans-serif][size=2][b]William Gilbert Strang[/b] (born November 27, 1934), usually known as simply [b]Gilbert Strang[/b], is a renowned [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States"]American[/url] [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematician"]mathematician[/url], with contributions to [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finite_elements"]finite element theory[/url], the[url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calculus_of_variations"]calculus of variations[/url], [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wavelet_analysis"]wavelet analysis[/url] and [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linear_algebra"]linear algebra[/url]. He has made many contributions to [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematics"]mathematics[/url] education, including publishing seven classic mathematics textbooks and one definitive [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monograph"]monograph[/url]. Strang is a Professor of Mathematics at the [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massachusetts_Institute_of_Technology"]Massachusetts Institute of Technology[/url]. He teaches Introduction to [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linear_Algebra"]Linear Algebra[/url] and Computational Science and Engineering and his lectures are freely available through [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIT_OpenCourseWare"]MIT OpenCourseWare[/url].[/quote][/size][/font]

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slynk    144
[quote name='kaktusas2598' timestamp='1299020476' post='4780729']
What nice that it covers AI, algorithms and other stuff too :)
But can one book cover so many topics and actually write about all that things clearly and deeply?
[/quote]

Check it out for yourself:

[url="http://books.google.com/books?id=8qBYYWbpLMUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=mathematics+and+physics+for+programmers&source=bl&ots=cPZvCU_UhJ&sig=gCkVRCwh8BcIl3gdAttFO1NGCaA&hl=en&ei=8X9tTaXrJYH88Ab29M2ODQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=6&ved=0CDQQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q&f=false"]http://books.google.com/books?id=8qBYYWbpLMUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=mathematics+and+physics+for+programmers&source=bl&ots=cPZvCU_UhJ&sig=gCkVRCwh8BcIl3gdAttFO1NGCaA&hl=en&ei=8X9tTaXrJYH88Ab29M2ODQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=6&ved=0CDQQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q&f=false[/url]

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Mozly    98
If you have no experience with math, I would say the dummies book is good to start out with.
Then you can move on to the more complex things.

I first learned to program from the dummies series and it allowed me get accustomed to the vocabulary of programming. That is why I recommend it.

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kaktusas2598    953
[quote name='slynk' timestamp='1299021840' post='4780740']
[quote name='kaktusas2598' timestamp='1299020476' post='4780729']
What nice that it covers AI, algorithms and other stuff too :)
But can one book cover so many topics and actually write about all that things clearly and deeply?
[/quote]

Check it out for yourself:

[url="http://books.google.com/books?id=8qBYYWbpLMUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=mathematics+and+physics+for+programmers&source=bl&ots=cPZvCU_UhJ&sig=gCkVRCwh8BcIl3gdAttFO1NGCaA&hl=en&ei=8X9tTaXrJYH88Ab29M2ODQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=6&ved=0CDQQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q&f=false"]http://books.google....epage&q&f=false[/url]
[/quote]

Thanks, it look good

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kaktusas2598    953
[quote name='Daaark' timestamp='1299047756' post='4780870']
Why not look at the videos from the Khan Academy? They are free and not dry and boring as hell to watch.
[/quote]

I know this, thanks for reply

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adder_noir    275
Yet again I have skimmed through the thread through ignorance not lack of time to be honest but I will add this at the risk of looking a fool having not properly read the above posts.

I have 11 G.C.S.E.'s (6 years) 4 A-Levels (3 years) and an Honours Degree in Combined Engineering which took me four years to complete. I studied subjects such as fluid mechanics, turbomachinery and others all of which involve high order differential equations and rapidly changing states of matter, including super sonic flows and boundary layers which concern airflow over aerodynamic objects - plane wings for example.

[b]I got through all of it without properly understanding Calculus[/b]. Seriously. I graduated 9 years ago and some of my lecturers were/are top experts in their field. One is an advisory to Formula One racing whom himself authored one of the books recommended on the course, another in the electrical fields is from China and is on something called the power generation or distribution advisory board in Beijing. We used to call him Dr. Evil because although he was a lovely old common sense orientated Good Old Chinese wise and very compassionate man (so many of the old china generation really are [b]great[/b] people) he had a James Bond film baddie kind of voice and manner.

The University I studied at is one of the top Engineering Universities in the world and they are heavily involved with Marconi and several major car manufacturers.

Having said all that 2 years ago I read this:

[b]The Complete Idiot's Guide To Calculus - authored by W Michael Kelley.

[/b]I understood absolutely all of it and it was really a wonderful read and presented the subject of Calculus to me in a way I could perfectly understand and left me feeling thrilled I was making real progress. I reckon or I dare to reckon I could teach almost anyone Calculus with the aid of this book. It was not dumbed down either, the latter topics were very in depth, further than I ever got during my formal education and no doubt this book will come in very useful at some point in the future. Sometime last year I wrecked a load of textbooks in an appalling rage some of which were £30+ brand new never opened. I still didn't have the heart to trash this book even in the most foul of tempers, I'd bonded with it that much.

The lesson? Don't ever underestimate how good some of these books are, and don't ever pigeon hole yourself as not being good enough just because you don't have a major degree behind you. Alot of people I'm sure could do so much more than they presently do if they just changed their attitude and gave themselves a chance to learn. That may or may not apply to you the OP.

I hope that's useful? :)

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Mozly    98
[quote]
The lesson? Don't ever underestimate how good some of these books are, and don't ever pigeon hole yourself as not being good enough just because you don't have a major degree behind you. Alot of people I'm sure could do so much more than they presently do if they just changed their attitude and gave themselves a chance to learn. That may or may not apply to you the OP.
[/quote]

Too true, especially in engineering. I've met undergraduates at my university who dont know the basics like the value sin(pi/4) \. It saddens me that these people are the one's at a better chance at a job, not because they are worthy, but because they have right diplomas and the right hookup.

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Pomnico    110
I have no experience with for dummies about mathematics, but I've had some books from this series on other topics. I'd say they didn't explained deeply the subject, but if you are just trying to undarstand new things, you are not looking for that. They were instead a great introduction to programming for example, explaining step by step the topic. Very few other books I've had used such a simple language to properly explain such complicated subjects.
In other words - if you are just beginning and have little understanding of math I suppose they would be just perfect for you.

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