#1
Hey
I'm planning on studying Physics at Uni next year, and I need to hand my UCAS personal statement in on Monday and I was going to mention a couple of books that I've 'read' on it. I don't intend to try and blag that I've read them, I was just planning on reading them inbetween completing the personal statement and actually attending any interviews where I may be asked about them.

I'm about halfway through 'The Elegant Universe' by Brian Greene now, and I was wondering if anybody had read 'The Fabric of the Cosmos' by him or 'The Mind Of God' by Paul Davies? If so, how long and difficult to digest are they? I need to have them and preferably one or two others read by about December if possible. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
#2
If you want a comprehensive grasp on classical and modern physics, you have to read the Feynman Lectures. They are 3 volumes spanning a multitude of subjects that a physics undergrad would learn.

Complete with the mathematical explanations, they are definitely awesome.
Quote by denizenz
I'll logic you right in the thyroid.

Art & Lutherie
#3
I cannot overstress this enough.

Aside from "interesting textbooks" let me recommend you two ESSENTIAL texts to any Physics or Engineering student

University Physics - Young and Freedman

Engineering Mathematics - K. A. Stroud.

Bizarrely, the second one is more important than the first. If there was ONE textbook you had to buy, it would be that one. If you're just interested in General reading into Physics, don't buy, just visit your library. And the Uni Library shouldn't disappoint either. Where are you studying?
Last edited by LordBishek at Sep 5, 2008,
#4
I hate Young and Freedman's textbook. I hate everything about it.
#5
Whoops. How could I forget the Sears and Zemansky University Physics book. I used it for my undergrad physics classes and it is one of the most delightful books evar.

I have the 11th edition and it's so kickass. Pretty much an encyclopedia of classical and modern physics...

EDIT:

^ Lol at teh nubs.
Quote by denizenz
I'll logic you right in the thyroid.

Art & Lutherie
#6
Quote by smb
I hate Young and Freedman's textbook. I hate everything about it.

Well I hate everything about you, you big green mean bastard! You always have to take things too far!

EDIT: But seriously, why no love for Y and F? Their book was pretty comprehensive and well explained
#7
Quote by LordBishek
But seriously, why no love for Y and F? Their book was pretty comprehensive and well explained
I genuinely do hate everything about it. I hate the stupidly flimsy cover on the paperback edition. I hate the order of the chapters. I hate the stupid long introduction by whichever of them likes planes or guns or whatever his stupid hobby is.

I've probably mostly projected hatred of my course on to this book (which has been thrown around, stabbed, written all over and generally abused) but nevermind that
#8
Quote by smb
I genuinely do hate everything about it. I hate the stupidly flimsy cover on the paperback edition. I hate the order of the chapters. I hate the stupid long introduction by whichever of them likes planes or guns or whatever his stupid hobby is.

I've probably mostly projected hatred of my course on to this book (which has been thrown around, stabbed, written all over and generally abused) but nevermind that


I crossed out Engineering Mathematics and wrote "The Old Testament" in permanent marker on the cover. When i get Advanced Engineering Mathematics, I'm going to write the "New testament"

And you're right, that flimsy ass cover is very irritating. But, on the plus side, one of them put in a reference to Dune.
#9
I have the hardcover and it's the sturdiest book I have.

Quote by denizenz
I'll logic you right in the thyroid.

Art & Lutherie
#10
A Brief History of Time - Stephen Hawking
08' Fender MiA Strat
Fender Blues Junior
#11
I cannot overstress this enough.

Aside from "interesting textbooks" let me recommend you two ESSENTIAL texts to any Physics or Engineering student

University Physics - Young and Freedman

Engineering Mathematics - K. A. Stroud.

Bizarrely, the second one is more important than the first. If there was ONE textbook you had to buy, it would be that one. If you're just interested in General reading into Physics, don't buy, just visit your library. And the Uni Library shouldn't disappoint either. Where are you studying?




Yeah, I was planning on getting them from local libraries, I'm on a pretty tight budget at the moment.
Oxford or Durham with a bit of luck, I think I find out if I've been accepted by iether of them at around January.
I'm guessing you're at Manchester from your location? What's the department like there? I was gonna check it out but it's too close to home.

And I saw the Feynman Lectures, it looked to be a bit of a beast though, I doubt I'd be able to get it read in time for the interview. It's also fairly expensive so I doubt I'd be able to talk the librarians at my college into ordering it.
#12
Quote by burningcowsrule
And I saw the Feynman Lectures, it looked to be a bit of a beast though, I doubt I'd be able to get it read in time for the interview. It's also fairly expensive so I doubt I'd be able to talk the librarians at my college into ordering it.
Download them.
#13
Quote by burningcowsrule
Yeah, I was planning on getting them from local libraries, I'm on a pretty tight budget at the moment.
Oxford or Durham with a bit of luck, I think I find out if I've been accepted by iether of them at around January.
I'm guessing you're at Manchester from your location? What's the department like there? I was gonna check it out but it's too close to home.

And I saw the Feynman Lectures, it looked to be a bit of a beast though, I doubt I'd be able to get it read in time for the interview. It's also fairly expensive so I doubt I'd be able to talk the librarians at my college into ordering it.


Very good. Durhams good, but I'd advise Cambridge over Oxford. TBH, any of the Russell Group Unis are pretty good with regard to Physics.

But Manchester owns Jodrell Bank, so we win
#14
Quote by smb
Download them.


...Good call
EDIT: ^ Yeah, but Cambridge only carry out Physics as part of a Natural Science Degree, so you have to do Chemistry and Biology Modules, which I'm not particularly interested in. And wasn't Jodrell Bank's funding getting slashed? You lose
Last edited by burningcowsrule at Sep 5, 2008,
#15
Quote by burningcowsrule
...Good call
EDIT: ^ Yeah, but Cambridge only carry out Physics as part of a Natural Science Degree, so you have to do Chemistry and Biology Modules, which I'm not particularly interested in. And wasn't Jodrell Bank's funding getting slashed? You lose


I don't think so. I think there were plans. In any case, I'm an engineer, not a physicist
#16
Quote by LordBishek
I cannot overstress this enough.

Aside from "interesting textbooks" let me recommend you two ESSENTIAL texts to any Physics or Engineering student

University Physics - Young and Freedman

Engineering Mathematics - K. A. Stroud.

Bizarrely, the second one is more important than the first. If there was ONE textbook you had to buy, it would be that one. If you're just interested in General reading into Physics, don't buy, just visit your library. And the Uni Library shouldn't disappoint either. Where are you studying?

They're cool books, but they're pretty full on for just casual reading to write down on a UCAS application. Although, yeah, they're both pretty rad.
#17
Quote by burningcowsrule
...Good call
EDIT: ^ Yeah, but Cambridge only carry out Physics as part of a Natural Science Degree, so you have to do Chemistry and Biology Modules, which I'm not particularly interested in. And wasn't Jodrell Bank's funding getting slashed? You lose


Not so
Quote by Cambridge university website

If you are interested in the more physical sciences then in the first year you might choose:

-three from the following first year subjects: Physics, Chemistry, Materials and Mineral Sciences or Geology
-or two of these with a biological subject (Evolution and Behaviour, Physiology of Organisms or Biology of Cells)
-or two of these with Computer Science

A level Mathematics is essential for the physical sciences, and you must also take Mathematics for Natural Sciences in your first year.

If you think of yourself as a physicist, then you will probably choose Physics A and Physics B in the second year, with either another science subject or Mathematics, and specialise in the third and fourth years in Experimental and Theoretical Physics, or perhaps Astrophysics.

Potential chemists will probably take Chemistry A and B in the second year. These can be combined with either a more biological subject, such as Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, or with Physics, Mathematics, or Materials Science and Metallurgy or even Experimental Psychology or History and Philosophy of Science.

Many physical scientists discover a real enthusiasm for the new subjects that they start in the first year, such as Geology or Materials and Mineral Sciences or even a biological subject such as Biology of Cells, and continue to develop these in their second and/or third year.
#18
Quote by Craigo
They're cool books, but they're pretty full on for just casual reading to write down on a UCAS application. Although, yeah, they're both pretty rad.


They aren't for casual reading. I'm saying those two are going to be immensly useful to him with respect to his course, and will probably be on his reading list anyway, so he might as well set aside some money for them now.
#19
Quote by LordBishek
They aren't for casual reading. I'm saying those two are going to be immensly useful to him with respect to his course, and will probably be on his reading list anyway, so he might as well set aside some money for them now.

Fair enough.