Page 340 of 340 FirstFirst ... 240290330336337338339340
Results 5,086 to 5,098 of 5098

Thread: What books are you currently reading?

  1. #5086
    Senior Member philoctetes's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Posts
    958
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Fritz Kobus View Post
    Ok, I give up. I was lost by the end of Chapter 1 and by the end of chapter 2 I am dazed and confused. I'll skim through the rest in hopes of gleaning a bit of useful information, but frankly, I thought this was more the Music Theory for Simpletons, but it appears to require a high level of musical education to cut your way through it. It would be easier to learn Greek IMO.

    Just supports my initial thought that unless one is a professional musician, music is meant to be enjoyed, not understood.
    I'm no professional and I think music is meant for both. I regret waiting until my 50s to get into theory. This is the best book I found to start with.



    For a more comprehensive reference on notation and terminology, this one is not bad


  2. #5087
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    102
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Fritz Kobus View Post
    You also need to read the follow-up on Surely You're Joking, titled, "What do You Care What Other People Think." I tried the Lectures and it was way too deep for me. These were the actual class notes compiled, not the popular book on physics, which was difficult enough. I read that Cal-Tech professors would sit in in Feynman's lectures.
    I'll be sure to look into that. Sometimes I think I worship Feynman to an unhealthy degree...

    The Feynman Lectures from what I've read (I'm halfway through Volume I, the reason I said just starting is because with physics, you sort of always feel you are just starting!) are utterly fantastic though, if you ever decide to give them another shot. They definitely seem daunting if your read them out of order, but I think if you start at the beginning it warms you up with basic concepts before going on to more obscure ones. The thing I find so great about them is that they explain a lot of things in ways you're just not used to hearing from a typical university/high school professor. They make physics beautiful. Lecture no.22 in the first volume, "algebra", I find particularly beautiful - it shows an intuitive derivation for Euler's Equation starting all the way back at fundamental principles of mathematics.

    And the Cal-Tech thing I've read about too, which particularly excites me considering I'm hoping to apply there for an undergrad!

  3. Likes Fritz Kobus liked this post
  4. #5088
    Senior Member Jacck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Czech Republic
    Posts
    3,303
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksandr Rachkofiev View Post
    I'll be sure to look into that. Sometimes I think I worship Feynman to an unhealthy degree...

    The Feynman Lectures from what I've read (I'm halfway through Volume I, the reason I said just starting is because with physics, you sort of always feel you are just starting!) are utterly fantastic though, if you ever decide to give them another shot. They definitely seem daunting if your read them out of order, but I think if you start at the beginning it warms you up with basic concepts before going on to more obscure ones. The thing I find so great about them is that they explain a lot of things in ways you're just not used to hearing from a typical university/high school professor. They make physics beautiful. Lecture no.22 in the first volume, "algebra", I find particularly beautiful - it shows an intuitive derivation for Euler's Equation starting all the way back at fundamental principles of mathematics.

    And the Cal-Tech thing I've read about too, which particularly excites me considering I'm hoping to apply there for an undergrad!
    I read the lectures before studying physics at university. While it was a stimulating and great reading and brought me to physics, I actually only fully got the lectures after I got a proper B.Sc. in physics. I would not even recommend the lectures to undergraduate physics students, because they are too chaotic. You get the most out of the lectures, if you had proper university physics courses in mechanics (both Newtonian and analytical), in electrodynamics and quantum mechanics etc. And you will not learn these things from Feynman. To properly learn and comprehend these things, you need to compute and solve countless problems. But after you learn these subjects from other more pedagogical sources and you already comprehend them, then Feynman's fresh approach and fresh insights full of gems are very enjoyable reading.

    another excellent course of theoretical physics are the books by Lev Landau - Course of Theoretical Physics
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Course...etical_Physics
    which was used at my university for graduate to postgraduate level theoretical physics

    I would also recommend to watch these Walter Lewin lectures
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCli..._Fmw/playlists
    they are very feynmanesque. Walter Lewin was then fired because of some alledged sexual harassment (the US is beyond crazy in this regard)
    Last edited by Jacck; Jul-11-2019 at 10:15.

  5. Likes Aleksandr Rachkofiev liked this post
  6. #5089
    Senior Member jegreenwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    1,775
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by philoctetes View Post
    I'm no professional and I think music is meant for both. I regret waiting until my 50s to get into theory. This is the best book I found to start with.



    For a more comprehensive reference on notation and terminology, this one is not bad

    I took an intro to music theory classes back in the '80s. We started with the most rudimentary material - much of it I knew from playing an instrument fo a few years. I returned about 5 years ago to take more advanced classes with the same instructor. Now, according to him, I have the equivalent of a first year music student's understanding of basic diatonic theory. (I doubt it, myself, but I certainly know more than I used to.) I have now moved on to music analysis (with the same teacher). We'll be finishing up Mozart's K. 310 this afternoon.

    My instructor does have a set of teaching materials for purchase if anyone is interested. It's decidely a one man project; there are more than a few typos. I sometimes wonder if I should offer to proofread it for him.

  7. #5090
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    2,218
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksandr Rachkofiev View Post
    I just compiled my reading list, and it's over 70 books long! At least I have long life ahead of me to read them (I hope).

    Currently I'm working through Dostoevsky's best works (starting with Notes from Underground, White Nights, and Crime and Punishment), but I also have summer reading for next year in the form of Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club.

    Additionally I'm reading Will Durant's the Story of Philosophy and preparing for Thomas Rawls' A Theory of Justice. To top off the political readings I'm skimming Chomsky's Manufacturing Consent and Sowell's Basic Economics.

    In the science department I've just finished "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman" (a wonderful read I'd recommend to anyone who admires Feynman) and am just starting the first volume of the Feynman Lectures. I've got a LOT on my plate...

    I'm definitely starting to learn the lesson in life that your to-do list never shrinks. For every item you check off, three are added. It's quite humbling but still rather irritating!
    There's some deep truth in your post. I know that I will never get through all of my TBR list, but that also gives me the freedom to remove items from it based on changing taste or reading a short bit of the beginning. I know that there is always new publishing and rereading to carry me through if the TBR ever did hit zero.

    I'm currently reading Ball Lightning by Cixin Liu, Ogre Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine, and rereading Star Wars: Shatterpoint by Matthew Stover.

  8. #5091
    Senior Member starthrower's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Syracuse, NY USA
    Posts
    9,898
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Short-term thinkers are rewarded with reelection, while those who dare to take seriously our responsibility to future generations commonly find themselves out of office.

    - Marcia Bjornerud, Geologist

  9. #5092
    Senior Member KenOC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    SoCal, USA
    Posts
    19,043
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I’m reading Steven Pinker’s Enlightenment Now, which seems to be an endorsement of the values of the enlightenment in a world he sees slipping back toward chauvinism and unreason. I had previously read his The Better Angels of our Nature, which laid ouit (quite convincingly) the tremendous decline in the rates of all sorts of violence over the past few hundred years.

    Like that book, this one seems quite optimistic. But I see that some critics fault his ignoring the seemingly inevitable disasters arising from population growth and environmental damage. Haven’t got that far yet!


  10. #5093
    Senior Member Fritz Kobus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Next to Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    12,201
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacck View Post
    I read the lectures before studying physics at university. While it was a stimulating and great reading and brought me to physics, I actually only fully got the lectures after I got a proper B.Sc. in physics. I would not even recommend the lectures to undergraduate physics students, because they are too chaotic. You get the most out of the lectures, if you had proper university physics courses in mechanics (both Newtonian and analytical), in electrodynamics and quantum mechanics etc. And you will not learn these things from Feynman. To properly learn and comprehend these things, you need to compute and solve countless problems. But after you learn these subjects from other more pedagogical sources and you already comprehend them, then Feynman's fresh approach and fresh insights full of gems are very enjoyable reading.

    another excellent course of theoretical physics are the books by Lev Landau - Course of Theoretical Physics
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Course...etical_Physics
    which was used at my university for graduate to postgraduate level theoretical physics

    I would also recommend to watch these Walter Lewin lectures
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCli..._Fmw/playlists
    they are very feynmanesque. Walter Lewin was then fired because of some alledged sexual harassment (the US is beyond crazy in this regard)
    The "easier" book to read is Feynman's "Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher."
    Last edited by Fritz Kobus; Jul-12-2019 at 04:24.
    "All of Italian opera can be heard in [Bellini's] "Ah! non creda [mirarti]."
    --Renata Scotto in "Scotto, More Than a DIva."

  11. #5094
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    102
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacck View Post
    I read the lectures before studying physics at university. While it was a stimulating and great reading and brought me to physics, I actually only fully got the lectures after I got a proper B.Sc. in physics. I would not even recommend the lectures to undergraduate physics students, because they are too chaotic. You get the most out of the lectures, if you had proper university physics courses in mechanics (both Newtonian and analytical), in electrodynamics and quantum mechanics etc. And you will not learn these things from Feynman. To properly learn and comprehend these things, you need to compute and solve countless problems. But after you learn these subjects from other more pedagogical sources and you already comprehend them, then Feynman's fresh approach and fresh insights full of gems are very enjoyable reading.

    another excellent course of theoretical physics are the books by Lev Landau - Course of Theoretical Physics
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Course...etical_Physics
    which was used at my university for graduate to postgraduate level theoretical physics

    I would also recommend to watch these Walter Lewin lectures
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCli..._Fmw/playlists
    they are very feynmanesque. Walter Lewin was then fired because of some alledged sexual harassment (the US is beyond crazy in this regard)
    Thanks for the sources - I'll check them out. To be sure, I'm not relying on the Lectures to teach me these subjects, as I've already learned about them to a substantial degree. I haven't exactly gotten to learning about the Hamiltonian, but my knowledge of Classical Mechanics is I think pretty good (I've been through a bit of Resnick & Haliday, one of the more reliable mechanics textbooks, as well as taken some undergrad courses already). There is truth in your words though - I read the start of the Quantum Mechanics in Volume III just to see what it was like, and I was very confused, so I backed up a bit. I'm planning on learning E&M from conventional sources this summer and next year, and then diving into Volume II the year after, and saving Volume III for when I can really appreciate it. I think I can handle Volume I right now though.

    Just curious, are you currently pursuing a career in physics? From various unreliable internet sources, I've heard things varying from "Research Physics has been a dead field ever since the Standard Model was accepted as the status quo - the lack of progress yet continued investment in String Theory shows us this" to "Physics is in a golden age right now, but most advancements are not approachable or marketable through Pop Science". Is there truth to any of this, or can you give me a better idea of what's going on? This may not be the place (actually it's probably not the place), but I'm interested in maybe going into research physics, so I'm going to ask it anyway

  12. #5095
    Senior Member Jacck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Czech Republic
    Posts
    3,303
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksandr Rachkofiev View Post
    Thanks for the sources - I'll check them out. To be sure, I'm not relying on the Lectures to teach me these subjects, as I've already learned about them to a substantial degree. I haven't exactly gotten to learning about the Hamiltonian, but my knowledge of Classical Mechanics is I think pretty good (I've been through a bit of Resnick & Haliday, one of the more reliable mechanics textbooks, as well as taken some undergrad courses already). There is truth in your words though - I read the start of the Quantum Mechanics in Volume III just to see what it was like, and I was very confused, so I backed up a bit. I'm planning on learning E&M from conventional sources this summer and next year, and then diving into Volume II the year after, and saving Volume III for when I can really appreciate it. I think I can handle Volume I right now though.

    Just curious, are you currently pursuing a career in physics? From various unreliable internet sources, I've heard things varying from "Research Physics has been a dead field ever since the Standard Model was accepted as the status quo - the lack of progress yet continued investment in String Theory shows us this" to "Physics is in a golden age right now, but most advancements are not approachable or marketable through Pop Science". Is there truth to any of this, or can you give me a better idea of what's going on? This may not be the place (actually it's probably not the place), but I'm interested in maybe going into research physics, so I'm going to ask it anyway
    no, I am not persuing a career in physics, but in neuroscience (neuroimaging etc). But I followed these "string wars" with interest and it is still a hot topic. On one side, you have fanatical proponents of string theory, on the other side equally fanatical critics, there is a lot of emotion, even hate. You would not expect such hate and behavior from world's top intellectuals (the average IQ among string theorists is probably above 150). There is one Czech string theorist who has been especially vocal on the internet. Maybe you know him through his blogs. A quite heavy blow to string theory was given by the negative LHC results, when it failed to find confirmation for SUSY (supersymmetry). So my own impression (as an outsider) is that the top fundamental research is in a little bit of a crisis, or stagnation, a no one knows how to continue. It is best when you read arguments from both sides
    Peter Woit is one of the most vocal critics of ST
    http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/talks/lisbontalk.pdf
    Is a research career in physics worth it? I do not know. If you love physics, then do it. My impression is that string theory is a swamp of heavy mathematics and the most depressing prospect is that you can sink 30 years of your life into something that might later turn out to be a blind alley. And a research career is generally pretty poor choice. You might not believe the horror stories about a grad school, but they are all true :-)
    http://www.labtimes.org/labtimes/iss...1_05_34_41.pdf

  13. Likes Aleksandr Rachkofiev liked this post
  14. #5096
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Posts
    925
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksandr Rachkofiev View Post
    Just curious, are you currently pursuing a career in physics? From various unreliable internet sources, I've heard things varying from "Research Physics has been a dead field ever since the Standard Model was accepted as the status quo - the lack of progress yet continued investment in String Theory shows us this" to "Physics is in a golden age right now, but most advancements are not approachable or marketable through Pop Science". Is there truth to any of this, or can you give me a better idea of what's going on? This may not be the place (actually it's probably not the place), but I'm interested in maybe going into research physics, so I'm going to ask it anyway
    My background is in physics, and I spend many years as a physics researcher. I would never suggest anyone pursue a career in physics. Particle physics has become irrelevant. When it started the particles that make up the matter we actually encounter were being studied. It has now wandered into speculations that probably can never be tested, and at best make up little poems about how we imagine the universe began, etc. Some successfully game the system. Garret Lisi (surfer dude and his theory of everything) was able to parlay his brief celebrity into an "institute" on Maui which allows him to go wind surfing every day, despite never having done an honest days work in his life, as far as I am aware. The vital areas of physic are not fundamental particles, but complex system physics, statistical physics, biological physics, materials physics. The systems of funding for science in the U.S. are cruel and punishing to scientists. No rational person would willingly submit him or herself to them. Maybe it is different in other parts of the world.
    Last edited by Baron Scarpia; Jul-12-2019 at 21:17.

  15. Likes Bwv 1080, Aleksandr Rachkofiev liked this post
  16. #5097
    Senior Member Bwv 1080's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    178
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Scarpia View Post
    arret Lisi (surfer dude and his theory of everything) was able to parlay his brief celebrity into an "institute" on Maui which allows him to go wind surfing every day, despite never having done an honest days work in his life, as far as I am aware.
    You mean a Spirograph drawing does not unify quantum mechanics and general relativity? Way above my pay grade, but always struck me as too neat that the E8 thingy would somehow tie everything together

  17. #5098
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Posts
    925
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bwv 1080 View Post
    You mean a Spirograph drawing does not unify quantum mechanics and general relativity? Way above my pay grade, but always struck me as too neat that the E8 thingy would somehow tie everything together
    Not my field, but I don't doubt there is some correspondence between the E8 thingy (I think that is actually the technical term) and the families of particles that have been found. But I don't think any predictive power has been demonstrated. The E8 thingy has its symmetry and the universe has its symmetry and you can line them up. The main value of the E8 thingy is that it convinced some sort of silicon valley VC guy to give surfer dude money for his "institute." It pays for a lot of surf board wax. If I had come up with the E8 thingy it would be paying for expensive electrostatic speakers.

  18. Likes Bwv 1080, Aleksandr Rachkofiev liked this post

Similar Threads

  1. Do you like reading?
    By Mephistopheles in forum Community Forum
    Replies: 59
    Last Post: Sep-14-2017, 02:25
  2. Replies: 73
    Last Post: Sep-26-2014, 00:10
  3. If you are reading this...
    By Argus in forum Community Forum
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: Mar-31-2012, 19:07
  4. What are we all reading?
    By Somnifer in forum Community Forum
    Replies: 33
    Last Post: Oct-05-2009, 11:38
  5. reading
    By ipson in forum Recorded Music and Publications
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Sep-11-2006, 20:24

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •