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Fundamentals of Physics 5th Edition

73 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0471105589
ISBN-10: 0471105589
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Instructor's Manual, Instructor's Supplement, Transparencies, Complete Solutions, Animated Illustrations for Mac and IBM, Image Manager, Study Guide and Learning Ware for Mac available. -- The publisher, John Wiley & Sons --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

Retaining the comprehensiveness and rigor of the previous edition, this sequel has been dramatically revised to be more student oriented. Definitions and issues have been improved, making them tighter and more easily understood. More than 400 sample problems have been updated and expanded to reinforce physics concepts. Formulas involving elements of calculus are better explained due to additional subsections. A wealth of animated illustrations and full-color photographs will capture today's visually-oriented students' attention. Part 1 contains chapters 1-12, Part 2 contains chapters 13-22, Part 3 contains chapters 23-34, and Part 4 contains chapters 35-42. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1080 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 5 edition (August 9, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471105589
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471105589
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1.6 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #479,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 39 people found the following review helpful By G. Avvinti on March 7, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I've done extensive usage of this book lately together with Sears and Zemansky's "University Physics". So it has been natural to me to compare the books while using them day by day.
The result has been quite disappointing for me, regarding Halliday's book.
The book is very clear and well illustrated, and can be successfully used as an easy intro to the subject. It is also complete since you'll find all of the classical and modern Physics topics.
But ... but unfortunately in this case easy has meant shallow to me, since it often happened that for a given topic, concepts were given "as they were", with no explanation of the why or how scientists arrived to a given formulation or result. Take the case of Simple Harmonic Motion: x = Acos(wt+f). Although this formula presents no difficulties to me, I wonder where it does come from, how we (humans) first arrived to this conclusion. I had to read Sears and Zemansky to learn that the experiment that lead to this kind of formula includes a simple form of phasors.
The approaches sounds quite different to me: Halliday says "Take it for granted, be faithful", Sears and Zemansky say "This is the proper kind of formula, and you can see why by yourself if you do ...".
This is important to me, since I use to block myself on a concept until I fully understand it.
Another drawback of this book is the quantity of problems at the end of the chapter. In my humble opinion, an average of 65-70 problems are too few (considering you have the solutions of only half of them, i.e. the odd numbered ones).
So, this is my conclusion: easy and complete introduction to Physics, but too shallow to be really useful in a university course.
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47 of 54 people found the following review helpful By tonatiuh on August 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I am a graduate student in physics and I have been a teaching assistant for 3 years now at Iowa State Univesity and SUNY Stony Brook. I have taught introductory physics numerous times and I have teaching experience with this book: IT IS GREAT. It is everything that the students ever dreamed of. Every chapter has really easy to follow explanation of the fundamental theory and numerous step-by-step solved problems and examples. It also has nice boxes with general strategies for solving problems. At the end of every chapter there is an extensive collection of exercises that fit well with the material of the book.
An advice for the students: Dont start doing your homework before you understand the material. I have seen it numerous times, students that have not understood what is really going on, trying to solve the problems. Big mistake. Open the Halliday-Ressnick book, study the material first and then solve the problems. There is a general fear among the students to go through the theory of the book (any book) first and spend some quality time trying to absorb it. They just think that physics is too difficult of a subject and that they wont understand a thing. For that reason they just use their collection of formulae and blindly try to apply it in order to solve the problems.
I believe that Halliday-Resnick breaks this barrier, their treatment of the subject shows how much they care for the student and they do their best to explain things in the easiest possible way.Something that really breaks the ice is a photograph at the beginning of each chapter that shows an everyday phenomenon that will be treated in the course of that particular chapter, like the picture showin a young girl up in the mountain, with her hair floating up in the air!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 23, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Following this text can be quite difficult for one who has a weak command of mathematics or of basis physics principles. The examples are quite interesting, unlike many other textbooks. I must admit that most physics texts for scientists are more complicated than this. When the material is reexplained in a clear manner, the book makes perfect sense. I think that frustration with this book is due highly in part to those who took physics not realizing how challenging it can be, especially for those who do not understand such concepts easily. As for simply skipping lectures and trying to understand physics by reading the book, this is likely to be a complete failure; I don't know if any physics book could appropriately explain physics in an understandable manner without supplement. The problems, however, in the text are excellent, and while sometimes challenging, they are essential for a student to be able to solve problems on exams.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Yipp on October 3, 2005
Format: Hardcover
The first physics course I've ever taken used this very textbook. If you are about to be in the same boat as I was, let me tell you this: this is NOT a good introductory physics text. If you're not one of the kids who took AP Physics in high school, you will probably struggle with this book unless you have a very amazing professor.

Most of the formulas are given as "this is the general formula, and here's how we derive the other formulas from this". There's very little explanation involved with concepts, and when the author tries they are extremely hazy. This book apparently assumes that you've learned every concept before, and that you only need a brief overview and a table of formulas.

Not to completely bash this book - far from it. Formulas are listed in an organized and comprehensive fashion, and useful derivations are given also. If I need to look up a physics formula, this is the book I use as it's actually faster than sifting through Google. Beware, though, if this is your first endeavour into the world of physics.
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