1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

What is the meaning of transcendentals for calc books?

  1. Oct 18, 2012 #1
    I see these calculus books, some titled 'early transcendentals' some 'late transcendentals'. What does this mean? What is the difference?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 18, 2012 #2
    It means that book is bad. Just get a copy of Lang or Spivak's calculus.

    Seriously (or not): it means that functions such as [itex]e^x[/itex] are introduced later or earlier in the book.
  4. Oct 18, 2012 #3
    wow. I've seen this book by Lang recommended before. I'm in Calculus I currently, and my school is using Larson's Calculus for Calc I,II, and III, which I will be taking all of. Would you recommend either of Lang or Spivak as supplemental reading or that I just stick to the prescribed course book? I do enjoy having multiple sources of literature to gain more perspective on sometimes. Thoughts?
  5. Oct 18, 2012 #4


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Confusing and plain bad terminology, indeed. There's only one type of transcendentals = numerical values in the images of transcendental functions, such as sin x.
  6. Oct 18, 2012 #5
    Another thing that interests me is, most 'older' texts seem to present the integral before the derivative, while some books present the limit->derivative->integrals, is there any reasoning behind the order of presentation, or are they completely interchangeable and authors preference?
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
  7. Oct 22, 2012 #6
    Ahahaha and I was thinking of a clever way to answer this question! :D

    Well said! :D

Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook