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on 29 May 2017
This is a welcome text in Classical Mechanics aimed at the undergraduate embarking on a first degree in Physics or Engineering. The author is very skilled in taking the student through a series of stages of increasing complexity without an overly rigorous approach to the math. He starts at the very beginning without supposing much prior knowledge of mechanics. It does however ramp up fairly rapidly and the student will be expected to be familiar with calculus. This is a full text on the subject in hand but does not cover a detailed explanation of Lagrangian and Hamiltonian forms, vectors, and tensors. The student would be advised to supplement this text with others that specialise in the more advanced topics. Nevertheless, it is easily followed with examples and exercises and solutions. I would have been very happy if such text had been available when I embarked on a physics degree. Fully recommended.
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on 17 May 2015
Perfect for first year uni maths. Much better than the course notes provided by the lecturer...
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on 23 November 2008
This is a book on classical mechanics that goes direct to the point. It;s highly understandable and clear, however, if you have never studied mechanics and you learn well from this book only, I would be surprised! However, if you have solved exercises in mehcanics and physics in general and have read some mechanics, calculus and differential equations then reading this book is a pleasure since it's strict and defines what has to be defined. With that I mean that some books just explain you what things are in terms of the physical interpretation and then write a formula. But sometimes you dont really understand why or for what purpose a definition is needed. But this book tells you directly what you are looking for in every chapter or field of mechanics and then strictly defines the concepts to finally write the formula, or derive it, thus there is no ambiguity. Also, you know why the definitions or theorems have to (is useful to) be defined in that way. This is extremely important in mehanics since you really need to know what a point mass, a frame of reference and so on is if you want to think about how to solve problems and also about the significance of the result.

Also, and perhaps surprisingly for such a strict book in terms of theory (even if not very advanced mathematics are used), most of the exercises relevant to exams and real life basic problems are clearly solved and explained by the author. In sum, not for the beginner that struggles with elementary calculus, but still understandable enough for someone that has understood something at the level of "Thomas Calculus" which is an undergraduate book in applied maths or mathematical methods.

Anotehr thing to think about is that this book is up to date. It gives clear and precise introductions to some hot topics like theory of small oscillations, non-linear oscillations and phase space, and, importantly, starting from teh very basics guides you to the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formalism and Noether's theorem. What else can you expect from an undergraduate level book! Magnificent. Finally, like with anything else, I wouldn't learn from this book only and I would try to read others also like, for example, "Vector mechanics for engineers" or any other that you might find useful. The one I mention lacks up to date information and maybe notation but has plenty of other good things also.

Well done to the author and the department of applied maths in Manchester.
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on 31 January 2011
Brand new as stated. Very good service, arrived promply and well within the timescale indicated. Would recommend this supplier to others.
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on 29 May 2017
Douglas Gregory's book on Classical Mechanics is one of the most lucid and clear expositions of the subject. I was fortunate to have been taught by him and very much regret that this book did not exist at that time. This is a masterpiece by any standards and it gets so close to his teaching style.

The coverage in the book is extensive: beginning gently with an intro to vector calculus, the book strides through a rigorous treatment of Newton's Laws and Gravitation together with extensive applications in analysing particle dynamics, linear oscillations, energy and momentum conservation, orbits in conservative central fields.

The middle part of the book investigates the mathematics of many-particle systems with theory and examples of principles of linear and angular momentum and energy extended to two-body and rigid body problems.

The Analytical Mechanics section is a friendly introduction to Variational Calculus, Lagrange's equations and Hamilton's principle and provides a great platform for further study via more advanced texts like Goldstein et al.

The book does not stop there: the fourth section, covering some 150 pages includes Tensor algebra and introductions to the general theory of small oscillations, motion in rotating reference frames, and some interesting solvable problems in rigid body dynamics like snooker balls. the spinning top, a gyroscope, and the rolling wheel.

I note a few negative reviews here about this book. To that, I would challenge anyone who claims that they cannot learn from this book - it is more the case that they are incapable of being taught this subject.

If anyone who is serious about studying Applied Mathematics or Theoretical Physics finds this book anything but good, then wait till they get to serious stuff dealing with General Relativity, Variational Calculus, Fluid Dynamics etc.

Update: I recently dug out my class and tutorial notes/problem set from Gregory's class and was pleasantly surprised to find that much of what he taught and the style of presentation is reflected in these notes. That said, the book is far more extensive.
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VINE VOICEon 15 February 2010
This is one of the most frustrating books I have attempted to read. I think most of the problems stem from the layout. On first glance the typography and diagrams seem sparklingly clear. The examples are well chosen and progressive. The problem starts when you try to use the book. The problems all stem from the position of the diagrams on the pages. It took me some time to work this out but (almost - more on that later) every diagram is at the top of a page well above the text that refers to it. So one's eyes are continually flicking from the text to the diagram and back. You keep losing track of both text and diagram and can't link the two. I lost track of where I was in the text as I was reading. I have drawn arrows and lines all over the pages I have read to keep the link between text and diagrams "firm". There is worse, this diagram layout isn't consistent, sometimes the text and diagram are on different pages, with the text on a preceding page, so one flicks backwards and forwards through the pages between the text and the diagram completely losing sense of what is going on. Why is this a problem? Because this subject leans heavily on good diagrams linked closely to the text or description and solution of the problem for one to get any insight as to what the algebra is for. This layout is completely unnecessary. Even the simplest page layout software can place a diagram at any point on the page. "Sliding" a diagram down a page until it is immediately above the text that refers to it would have no negative impact and only benefit readability. I guess the page layout was determined by some software that just automatically plonked the pictures at the top of (almost) every page. Some examples from the beginning of the book:

Pg 18 Fig 1.10. Text 2/3 down the page after diagram
Pg 19 fig 1.11 diagram should be in the question not in the text above
Pg 28 fig 2.2
Pg 31 Fig 2.3 - in this case the diagram precedes the text that refers to it - so the layout isn't consistent
Pg 25 fig 2.1 somehow ends up at the bottom of the page but there seems to be no explicit reference to it in the text anyway!
Pg 35 Fig 2.5 is one of the worst examples with the diagram and text being on different pages. Flick, flick, flick

If I had been the author and I had seen this layout on the finished book I hope I would have been appalled.

And then some key diagrams are missing. On page 20 and 21 where normal and tangent vectors and curvature are discussed, where are the diagrams of a tangent and normal vector in relation to the curve? Why are unit vectors introduced on page 6 with a "hat" to emphasise they are unit vectors and then the "hat" completely ignored through the rest of the book - so their status as unit vectors isn't made clear?

And there is more. Top of page 30. I couldn't follow how dr/s x ds/dt became "vt" until I realised the scalar (v) and the vector (t) had casually been swapped. Then a few lines down "v" is replaced in the explanation by "|v|" and it takes a while to realise these represent the same thing. Again this section is crying out for a diagram.

A disappointment.
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on 20 April 2009
V.useful undergraduate text. Has examples of just about every type of standard ugrad classical mechanics problem. A few bizarre typos do nothing to spoil the general quality of the book. You'll be unlucky if your course material isnt here.
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on 14 June 2007
I bought this book as a chemist wanting to look a little deeper into the mathematical reasoning between many mathematical-based chemical concepts/theories. The book is a must for all those that deal with the far reaching concepts described by classical mechanics, particularly those of course on mathematics and physics degee schemes.

Well written book with coherently explained concepts and problems with answers.
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on 9 December 2013
Cambridge University Press don't seem to have woken up and realised that many people are studying outside universities. There is no point buying this book for self study as they won't give you the answers to the exercises unless you are a teacher. There are many other books from other publishers that don't have this archaic restriction.
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