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Correct Edition of Hoffman and Kunze's linear algebra textbook?

  1. May 15, 2009 #1
    I've been trying to learn linear algebra, and I heard Hoffman and Kunze's book recommended many times. Now, luckily for me, our library system has it. I got it, and it is somewhat unlike the book I was recommended. Rather than the purple and blue cover it has on amazon, it is just a plane dark blue cover. The copyright date is 1961, and mine has 326 pages as opposed to 407. I believe mine may be the first edition, while it seems the second edition is the one most recommended. Is my book simply an alternate printing, or is it a different version? If so, is the first edition as good as the second?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 17, 2009 #2
    Here is the Preface of my 2nd edition, now dusty and on the shelf. I never used the 1st, so make of this what you will.
    PS. dont feel sorry for me, I just scanned it and didnt actually write it all out... took about 20 seconds.

    Preface

    Our original purpose in writing this book was to provide a text for the undergraduate
    linear algebra course at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This
    course was designed for mathematics majors at the junior level, although threefourths
    of the students were drawn from other scientific and technological disciplines
    and ranged from freshmen through graduate students. This description of the
    M.I.T. audience for the text remains generally accurate today. The ten years since
    the first edition have seen the proliferation of linear algebra courses throughout
    the country and have afforded one of the authors the opportunity to teach the
    basic material to a variety of groups at Brandeis University, Washington University
    (St. Louis), and the University of California (Irvine).
    Our principal aim in revising Linear Algebra has been to increase the variety
    of courses which can easily be taught from it. On one hand, we have structured the
    chapters, especially the more difficult ones, so that there are several natural stopping
    points along the way, allowing the instructor in a one-quarter or one-semester
    course to exercise a considerable amount of choice in the subject matter. On the
    other hand, we have increased the amount of material in the text, so that it can be
    used for a rather comprehensive one-year course in linear algebra and even as a
    reference book for mathematicians.
    The major changes have been in our treatments of canonical forms and inner
    product spaces. In Chapter 6 we no longer begin with the general spatial theory
    which underlies the theory of canonical forms. We first handle characteristic values
    in relation to triangulation and diagonalization theorems and then build our way
    up to the general theory. We have split Chapter 8 so that the basic material on
    inner product spaces and unitary diagonalization is followed by a Chapter 9 which
    treats sesqui-linear forms and the more sophisticated properties of normal operators,
    including normal operators on real inner product spaces.
    We have also made a number of small changes and improvements from the
    first edition. But the basic philosophy behind the text is unchanged.
    We have made no particular concession to the fact that the majority of the
    students may not be primarily interested in mathematics. For we believe a mathematics
    course should not give science, engineering, or social science students a
    hodgepodge of techniques, but should provide them with an understanding of
    basic mathematical concepts.
    . . .
    On the other hand, we have been keenly aware of the wide range of backgrounds
    which the students may possess and, in particular, of the fact that the
    students have had very little experience with abstract mathematical reasoning.
    For this reason, we have avoided the introduction of too many abstract ideas at
    the very beginning of the book. In addition, we have included an Appendix which
    presents such basic ideas as set, function, and equivalence relation. We have found
    it most profitable not to dwell on these ideas independently, but to advise the
    students to read the Appendix when these ideas arise.
    Throughout the book we have included a great variety of examples of the
    important concepts which occur. The study of such examples is of fundamental
    importance and tends to minimize the number of students who can repeat definition,
    theorem, proof in logical order without grasping the meaning of the abstract
    concepts. The book also contains a wide variety of graded exercises (about six
    hundred), ranging from routine applications to ones which will extend the very
    best students. These exercises are intended to be an important part of the text.
    Chapter 1 deals with systems of linear equations and their solution by means
    of elementary row operations on matrices. It has been our practice to spend about
    six lectures on this material. It provides the student with some picture of the
    origins of linear algebra and with the computational technique necessary to understand
    examples of the more abstract ideas occurring in the later chapters. Chapter
    2 deals with vector spaces, subspaces, bases, and dimension. Chapter 3 treats
    linear transformations, their algebra, their representation by matrices, as well as
    isomorphism, linear functionals, and dual spaces. Chapter 4 defines the algebra of
    polynomials over a field, the ideals in that algebra, and the prime factorization of
    a polynomial. It also deals with roots, Taylor’s formula, and the Lagrange interpolation
    formula. Chapter 5 develops determinants of square matrices, the determinant
    being viewed as an alternating n-linear function of the rows of a matrix,
    and then proceeds to multilinear functions on modules as well as the Grassman ring.
    The material on modules places the concept of determinant in a wider and more
    comprehensive setting than is usually found in elementary textbooks. Chapters 6
    and 7 contain a discussion of the concepts which are basic to the analysis of a single
    linear transformation on a finite-dimensional vector space; the analysis of characteristic
    (eigen) values, triangulable and diagonalizable transformations; the concepts
    of the diagonalizable and nilpotent parts of a more general transformation,
    and the rational and Jordan canonical forms. The primary and cyclic decomposition
    theorems play a central role, the latter being arrived at through the study of
    admissible subspaces. Chapter 7 includes a discussion of matrices over a polynomial
    domain, the computation of invariant factors and elementary divisors of a matrix,
    and the development of the Smith canonical form. The chapter ends with a discussion
    of semi-simple operators, to round out the analysis of a single operator.
    Chapter 8 treats finite-dimensional inner product spaces in some detail. It covers
    the basic geometry, relating orthogonalization to the idea of ‘best approximation
    to a vector’ and leading to the concepts of the orthogonal projection of a vector
    onto a subspace and the orthogonal complement of a subspace. The chapter treats
    unitary operators and culminates in the diagonalization of self-adjoint and normal
    operators. Chapter 9 introduces sesqui-linear forms, relates them to positive and
    self-adjoint operators on an inner product space, moves on to the spectral theory
    of normal operators and then to more sophisticated results concerning normal
    operators on real or complex inner product spaces. Chapter 10 discusses bilinear
    forms, emphasizing canonical forms for symmetric and skew-symmetric forms, as
    well as groups preserving non-degenerate forms, especially the orthogonal, unitary,
    pseudo-orthogonal and Lorentz groups.
    We feel that any course which uses this text should cover Chapters 1, 2, and 3thoroughly, possibly excluding Sections 3.6 and 3.7 which deal with the double dual
    and the transpose of a linear transformation. Chapters 4 and 5, on polynomials and
    determinants, may be treated with varying degrees of thoroughness. In fact,
    polynomial ideals and basic properties of determinants may be covered quite
    sketchily without serious damage to the flow of the logic in the text; however, our
    inclination is to deal with these chapters carefully (except the results on modules),
    because the material illustrates so well the basic ideas of linear algebra. An elementary
    course may now be concluded nicely with the first four sections of Chapter
    6, together with (the new) Chapter 8. If the rational and Jordan forms are to
    be included, a more extensive coverage of Chapter 6 is necessary.
    Our indebtedness remains to those who contributed to the first edition, especially
    to Professors Harry Furstenberg, Louis Howard, Daniel Kan, Edward Thorp,
    to Mrs. Judith Bowers, Mrs. Betty Ann (Sargent) Rose and Miss Phyllis Ruby.
    In addition, we would like to thank the many students and colleagues whose perceptive
    comments led to this revision, and the staff of Prentice-Hall for their
    patience in dealing with two authors caught in the throes of academic administration.
    Lastly, special thanks are due to Mrs. Sophia Koulouras for both her skill
    and her tireless efforts in typing the revised manuscript.
    K. M. H. / R. A. K.
     
  4. Aug 18, 2009 #3

    thrill3rnit3

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    anybody? nobody?

    I really need an answer :tongue:
     
  5. Aug 31, 2009 #4

    thrill3rnit3

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    bump again, hopefully someone can answer this time around
     
  6. Aug 31, 2009 #5

    fluidistic

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    There are several questions in the original post.
    Do you own the first edition of the book? I suggest you to go to any university library and check out for the second edition and judge by yourself the differences.
    Have you tried Google books? (I can't use the system right now), hopefully you can get some preview.
     
  7. Aug 31, 2009 #6

    thrill3rnit3

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    Yes, I do own the 1st edition. Unfortunately, going to a university to manually check isn't one of my options; because if it is, I would've done it already.
     
  8. Aug 31, 2009 #7

    fluidistic

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    Ok, the post of Howers shows the content of the second edition. You can compare with yours.
    So I guess you're asking if the first edition is as good as the second. I don't know. All I know is that the content of the first edition is indeed really good but maybe there is not as much content as in the second edition. So don't hesitate to go through and learn from your book.
    This book has a good reputation.
     
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