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Good follow up to The theoretical Minimum?

  1. Aug 14, 2013 #1
    I'm currently self teaching myself physics and I have never seen physics before this. The book that I'm using is The Theoretical Minimum - What You Need to Know to Start Doing Physics by Leonard Susskind. I plan to be finished with the book by mid next week and my question is what's a good follow up?

    I'm extremely interested in quantum physicist and would like to learn it so I'm considering Introduction to Quantum Mechanics by David J. Griffiths and I would learn that accompanied by the third volume from the Feynman Lectures on Physics which I've read has a lot of good information on Quantum physics is that a viable follow up? Or will the material be to advanced for me?

    If it's to advanced what would you recommend that I learn before I start on this?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 14, 2013 #2
    How's your math? Do you know calc I, II and III? Do you know linear algebra (not just matrices, but vector spaces and such)?

    Are you comfortable with classical mechanics and the Hamiltonian formalism?
  4. Aug 14, 2013 #3
    One of the later lectures in the book covers Hamiltonians I haven't gotten to that lecture yet but after a quick scan it seems to be pretty detailed I should be pretty comfortable with them by the time I finish that lecture if not I'll study them more in depth. I'm comfortable with calc, but I've never sen linear algebra although I do know vectors.
  5. Aug 14, 2013 #4
    If you really want to be working through the more advanced texts, it's important that you are comfortable with the previous material at the level where you can solve a good amount of textbook problems. Susskind's book is fine, but I think it might only give an illusion of understanding unless you make sure to work out the exercises and seek out other sources as well. To really learn the material in there, first make sure that your calculus I-III, differential equations and linear algebra skills are damn solid. For this a commonly cited source is Boas' "Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences". Then if you already know Newtonian Mechanics, go through Taylor's "Classical Mechanics", focusing on Lagrangians and Hamiltonians, and Zettili's "Quantum Mechanics".
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2013
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