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Analytical Mechanics 6th Ed. by Fowles & Cassiday

  1. Dec 19, 2011 #1
    This is the book I used for classical mechanics in College. I'm looking through it again, trying to study and really deeply learn the things I winged in my undergrad years, hopefully to take a GRE and go into graduate school.

    I'm having some issues with this text. Often, it will use things like 'Thus' and 'It follows from' and seemingly skip either multiple steps in equations or not explain logically why a certain equation is arrived at. Particularly noticeable in example problems, it often leaves me wondering if its supposed to help or not.

    For instance, it gives a mass on an incline force problem early on, and

    a = Fx/m = g sin (theta)
    x-x0 = h/sin (theta)

    (Pretty easy so far, follows from geometry of the problem and force equations with constant acceleration)

    v2 = 2( g sin (theta)) (h/sin (theta)) = 2gh

    (and from there I just get lost and end up not wanting to study)

    Shouldn't the examples clearly walk me through problems so when I get to the exercises I have a guide? Are all books like this? Is this book doing this or am I just really dumb? Is there a better book I could be learning from?

  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 20, 2011 #2
    They've just used the work energy theorem, this kind of working is what you will more than likely find in most mechanics books, I've scratched my head at many a problem before realising what the author did, my advice is to do the problem yourself as much as possible (or at least work out what you would do); I find following somebody else's work quite difficult if I don't have an idea about how I'd do it first.
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