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Best way to learn the equations in physics

  1. Jan 6, 2012 #1
    I am wondering the best way to learn the equations in physics. I have already learned most of the concepts through other means ie. Googling. Is there any books that only teach the equations.
    Brian
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 6, 2012 #2
    Re: equations

    Which equations? I found myself doing SO many problems in Phys 1 that it just started to come naturally. But on the tests we were given and equation sheet, though I rarely used it.
     
  4. Jan 6, 2012 #3
    Re: equations

    I am not taking phys 1, just self learning. I was juat wondering if there any good books to read that teach you them.
    Brian
     
  5. Jan 7, 2012 #4
    Re: equations

    You can't really separate the math from the concepts so theres no such book as 'just equations'. Wouldnt make much sense.

    For example what is newton's second law, conceptually mean? If you said something like, "Force is equal to the rate of change of momentum" or something equivalent then all you did was put the equation into words. Mathematics is really the language of physics.
     
  6. Jan 7, 2012 #5
    Re: equations

    Feynman's Lectures on Physics are full of equations. Why not start with them?
     
  7. Jan 7, 2012 #6
    Re: equations

    I'll try Feynman's lectures, is it a book or audio
     
  8. Jan 7, 2012 #7
    Re: equations

    Eemmmmm... dude, memorizing the equations isn't going to get you anywhere in physics. Even something as simple as F=ma is significantly harder than it looks.
     
  9. Jan 7, 2012 #8
    Re: equations

    Yeah, I got a textbook at the library, so I guess it will work. Thanks everyone
     
  10. Jan 7, 2012 #9
    Re: equations

    This.

    I've never once gone out of my way to memorize equations. Some of them, like Schrodinger's equation from quantum mechanics or the first law of thermodynamics, do eventually embed themselves into your head after a while, but memorizing them won't help you do physics better. What matters more are the concepts: what the equations mean and how to manipulate them mathematically is far more important than being able to recite them.

    In fact, there are only a handful equations in physics. Conservation of energy, for example, shows up in several forms:

    1. [tex] m g h + \frac{1}{2} m v_i^2 = \frac{1}{2} m v_2^2[/tex]
    2. [tex] dU = T \: dS - p \: dV [/tex]
    3. [tex] - \frac{\hbar^2}{2m} \nabla^2 \Psi + V \Psi = i \hbar \frac{\partial \Psi}{\partial t} [/tex]

    etc.,

    They're all pretty much the same equation: energy before (+ work, if applicable) = energy after. It's just ONE equation, disguised as several. No need to memorize it in its myriad forms. Focus more on knowing when to applying the concept.
     
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