Learning about quaternions

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In summary, The conversation discusses the interest in learning more about quaternions and where to find information on them. The suggestion is made to go to the source, the inventor of quaternions, and a potential resource is provided. The individual also mentions checking out a book and considering taking more advanced courses to understand the concept better. Finally, they suggest looking into geometric algebra and provide some suggested authors.
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I am interested in learning more about quaternions because they can show more about a system than vector analysis. Does anyone know of a good website that teaches the theory and how to use quaternions? I have already tried the book Quaternions and Rotation Sequences. I might have to check it out from the library again if I can't find anything on the web.
 
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Thanks for the idea. I will try this, but I am not too certain whether it will be explained well enough. I checked out Maxwell's original treatise on Electricity and Magnetism and it was very difficult to understand. Part of it may be that I need to have taken more advanced physics and/or math course to understand it.
 
  • #4
skweiler said:
Thanks for the idea. I will try this, but I am not too certain whether it will be explained well enough. I checked out Maxwell's original treatise on Electricity and Magnetism and it was very difficult to understand. Part of it may be that I need to have taken more advanced physics and/or math course to understand it.

I read this text a while back and Hamilton does go into a lot of detail regarding the motivation behind the quaternion.

Also if you are interested in geometric algebra, look for stuff by Grassmann or Clifford or any kind of exposition on the ideas of these folk. The original authors (this primarily concerns grassmann) can be hard to understand, but the ideas (especially from Grassmann) are good to understand geometric algebra in a modern context.
 
  • #5


I can understand your interest in learning more about quaternions. They are a powerful mathematical tool that can provide a deeper understanding of complex systems. I would recommend starting with some basic resources on quaternions, such as introductory textbooks or online tutorials. One website that I have found to be helpful is the Quaternions and Rotations website, which provides a comprehensive overview of the theory and practical applications of quaternions. Additionally, you may want to consider reaching out to experts in the field or attending conferences or workshops on quaternions to gain a deeper understanding and practical experience. I wish you the best of luck in your pursuit of knowledge about quaternions.
 

1. What are quaternions?

Quaternions are a mathematical concept that extends the idea of complex numbers to four dimensions. They are represented as a combination of a scalar and a vector, and are often used in 3D computer graphics and physics simulations.

2. How are quaternions different from complex numbers?

While both quaternions and complex numbers involve a scalar and a vector, complex numbers only have two dimensions while quaternions have four. Quaternions also have a different multiplication rule and can be used to represent 3D rotations, while complex numbers cannot.

3. What applications use quaternions?

Quaternions are commonly used in 3D computer graphics, robotics, and physics simulations. They are also used in aerospace engineering, virtual reality, and video games.

4. How do you perform operations with quaternions?

To add or subtract quaternions, you simply add or subtract their corresponding scalar and vector components. Multiplication with quaternions follows a specific rule, and division involves finding the inverse of the quaternion. It is important to note that the order of quaternion multiplication matters.

5. Are quaternions difficult to learn?

Quaternions can be challenging to understand at first, especially for those who are not familiar with complex numbers or higher dimensions. However, with practice and a solid understanding of the concept, they can be a powerful tool for solving complex problems in mathematics and science.

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