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Calendrical Calculations Millennium edition 2nd Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The details and discussions of how they approach problems like the visibility of sunset are amazing and really opened my eyes to the difficulties of creating an accurate calendar under different systems. This book covers everything I could think of and quite a few ideas I would never consider.
I would give it 5 stars, except that the code and algorythms provided in the book are copyrighted and can not be used without explicit permission of the authors. I contacted the authors for a project I had, but it was determined that I could not use their algorithms since I intended to release under GNU license.
that needs to go behind calculations to determine date/time,
and is truly a must-read book for people who want to
write such software.
However, I did find the equations hard to adopt for my
own use, partially because the pseudocode fails to show
exactly what the units were. For example, on the later
chapters where one must take into account planetary
position and such, it is extremely hard to find out
exactly what each variable/number represent if you're
not already very familiar with the subject. I believe
most of the definitions are in fact in the book *somewhere*,
but they are buried deep. This makes it extremely cumbersome and
time consuming for the reader to actually try to
implement the calculations.
If the notation can be improved a bit, I think it would
be even better book.
Perhaps "anonymous" would have been happier if we did not share the details of errors with readers, but we feel it is in the reader's interest to have the errata open to public.
This was a big deal for me, which is why I'm giving it a one star review.
If the code was freely available, I'd probably give it 3-4 stars. I found the content frustratingly hard to decipher.
Firstly, lisp code, is not universal. I found it hard to adapt to lisp, and I have had to resort to the Java code which I am more familiar. I think the authors should have chosen non-specific coding routines, and shown more mathematical, intuitive ways of presenting the information. The presentation of the algorithms is somewhat cumbersome - especially the definitions.
Secondly, I deal with one calendar only, and my interest lies really, mainly with the Hebrew Calendar. I was disappointed that I had to refer to the Coptic Calendar for obtaining data for the Hebrew Calendar. It means I have to have code from both calendars, and I have to figure out what details I need from one system to the other. I would have liked to see each calendar dealt with as a totality in of itself.
Thirdly, The errata list is too long. The authors should present the corrections without all the added information (however useful). I'm not prepared to sift through a hundred pages looking for mistakes (especially minor ones), however interesting the added material maybe. It should be separately listed so I can easily refer to the critical mistakes if need be. I did note that there were very few critical mistakes.
Fourthly I felt the presentation of the algorithms were difficult to comprehend at first glance. Someone who is new to the field of algorithms, and presentation mathematically would find difficult to master.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I just received my copy today and it seems to be a decent book. I understand that the authors want to license their code; I can always write my own code once I understand the... Read morePublished on May 3, 2013 by etfjr
I really enjoyed reading this book. The cod eis all in Lisp, which was my second computer language. If you need the algorithms in your code, be sure to check the web site for any... Read morePublished on February 8, 2009 by James N. Record
I have used this book and its predecessor for a number of years. The explanation of the algorithms is excellent. Read morePublished on January 9, 2008 by Amazon Customer
The 2001 printing of this book is full of errors. The author's errata list is 71 pages long. Get the 2nd printing: paperback with updated CDROM. I'm going to be returning mine.Published on October 14, 2004 by Anonymous
All you ever wanted to know about calendrical stuff.Published on November 17, 2001 by Steven Woolgar