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Computational Science and Engineering 1st Edition

17 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0521198035
ISBN-10: 0961408812
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Editorial Reviews


Gil Strang has given the discipline of computational science and engineering its first testament in this new and comprehensive book. It surely extends Gil's long tradition of practical, wide-ranging, and insightful books that are invaluable for students, teachers, and researchers alike. If you could have only one book on a desert island, this might be it. --William Briggs, Professor of Mathematics at University of Colorado at Denver, and SIAM Vice-President for Education.

Book Description

Encompasses the full range of computational science and engineering from modeling to solution, whether analytic or numerical. Gilbert Strang has taught this material to thousands of engineers and scientists. Supporting resources, including video lectures, are provided by the author at

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 725 pages
  • Publisher: Wellesley-Cambridge Press; 1 edition (November 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0961408812
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521198035
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #517,345 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Gilbert Strang is Professor of Mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an Honorary Fellow of Balliol College. He was an undergraduate at MIT and a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford. His doctorate was from UCLA and since then he has taught at MIT. He has been a Sloan Fellow and a Fairchild Scholar and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Professor Strang has published a monograph with George Fix, "An Analysis of the Finite Element Method", and has authored six widely used textbooks. He served as President of SIAM during 1999 and 2000 and he is Chair of the U.S. National Committee on Mathematics for 2003-2004.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

72 of 74 people found the following review helpful By James M. Cargal on August 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The following is the review I published in The UMAP Journal (Summer, 2009, Vol 30, no. 2) pp. 175-178.

My second review for this journal [1986] was of Gilbert Strang's Introduction to Applied Mathematics (hereafter IAM). I have never been too happy with that review, where I said that it is a "wonderful book." True enough; but more appropriately, it is an important book, as is the book reviewed here, Computational Science and Engineering (hereafter CSE).

CSE is--and is not--a second edition of IAM. Apparently, it is the result
of more than 20 years of Strang teaching his favorite course at MIT,
presumably out of IAM. Since CSE does not contain everything in IAM
and also contains topics not in IAM, it is a different text. CSE contains
Strang's further ruminations on the nature of applied mathematics, and
I view it as the superior text, but some individuals might prefer IAM. To
some extent, either book represents Strang's philosophy of teaching applied mathematics--that we need a new approach--but this conviction is much more explicit in CSE.

In particular, Strang believes that we should focus on both modeling and
computation. Many books are about one or the other, and he feels that applied mathematics is both. Furthermore, Strang believes that applied problems tend to have a common structure, and Chapter 2 is devoted to illustrating this principle through a wide variety of problems.

In my review of IAM, I tried to give an idea of the range of topics without enumerating the contents. CSE has the same difficulty: Enumerating the topics is tedious, but the titles of the chapters are informative (though listing them does not do justice to the sheer range of content):
1. Applied Linear Algebra
Read more ›
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By S. Matthews on July 18, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a super collection of lectures. I read it because I wanted to know properly about numerical analysis, something that I've never systematically studied (as an unexpected bonus, I also pícked up a bunch of useful new linear algebra intuitions). If you want a coherent view of this stuff, then this has got to be as good a place to start as you can get. I can't compare the literature, since being painfully aware that I wasn't able to compare the literature was the reason I read it, but if I can't be comparative, I can certainly be positive: Strang is in effortless and complete command of his material, and a pleasure to read.

However, note that these are _lectures_ and consciously written as such (Strang takes a great deal of - entirely justifiable, if you check him out on youtube - pride in his classroom teaching), which means that there are occasional leaps (no bad thing, they make you think), minor lacunae, forward references and so on, all of which would be dealt with in a lecture as casual asides. If you don't want to deal with this sort of thing without him in the room with you, there may be other books out there that are more suitable (though I sort of doubt it).
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Xiao Hu on August 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Even though I love Prof. Strang for making his lectures available for people like me and even though I liked his linear algebra book, I can not say that this book is excellent. I think that he puts too many topics in one book without giving enough details or depth on any of them. The book is more like a collection of lecture notes rather than a book. If you like to study linear algebra, use his linear algebra book. If you study finite difference method for PDEs, Hoffman's is a much better choice. For numerical linear algebra, there is the book by Trefethen.

So, my suggestion for you is as follows. Pick up the book from a library. And go straight to a topic that you are somewhat familiar with. And try to see if Prof. Strang does an excellent job on that topic. I did that for a few of them, and I found that the book is not sufficient explaining those topics.

By the way, for CG method neither the book nor the video lectures are very useful. You will need the article by Jonathan Richard Shewchuk. You can find it online. This is the best for CG.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Temesgen M. Kindo on May 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This books gives a unified view to topics which can seem unrelated.
For someone who has prior knowledge in CSE or applied mathematics, this book is good. Keep it in your shelf and read it to enjoy the beauty of the subject, not to learn from it.

This book is not any where close to Strang's linear algebra book.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By mittim13 on March 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book tries to mash so much between the covers that Strang fails to start from the fundamentals and work systematically towards the solution/theorem. Each section reads much more like a concise list of things you shouldn't forget if you've already learned the topic, rather than trying to explain it to someone who is new to the material. It reads much like a professor's lecture notes that they would write to themselves to just remind them what to say, rather than the long explanation they would put on the blackboard so their students (who have never seen the material before) would understand. So it might be a good refresher book, but don't get it expecting to learn solely from this textbook.
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27 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Mohammad Omer on February 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dr Strangs book, is simply a work of love. If you have no idea of computational engineering, yet you want to see a man who had spent a lifetime in love, and still burried deep within it, experience Dr Strang's words. Pure and perfect. His style unparalleled, his passion unbounded. It needs to be there on every engineers desk, regardless of his discipline.
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