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The Calculus Direct: An intuitively Obvious Approach to a Basic Understanding of the Calculus for the Casual Observer [Kindle Edition]

John Weiss
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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Book Description

*It is recommended to view the kindle version of this book in the landscape setting so that the equations can be viewed properly*

This book takes no prior knowledge of mathematics for granted as it takes the student slowly and surely from addition all the way to a basic understanding of the calculus in the least painful and most efficient path possible. The calculus is not a hard subject and I prove this through an easy to read and obvious approach spanning only 100 pages. I have written this book with the following type of student in mind; the non-traditional student returning to college after a long break, a notoriously weak student in math who just needs to get past calculus to obtain a degree, and the garage tinkerer who wishes to understand a little more about the technical subjects.

This book is meant to address the many fundamental thought-blocks that keep the average 'mathaphobe' (or just an interested person who doesn't have the time to enroll in a course) from excelling in mathematics in a clear and concise manner. It is my sincerest hope that this book helps you with your needs.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
71 of 74 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I want my college time and money back October 29, 2010
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I spent so many hundreds of dollars, and uncountable hours, trying to learn calculus in college. Total rip off. All I really needed was this $3 book and maybe a week of quality reading time. I'm at the halfway point and I already know more than all those college classes were able to teach me. I feel comfortable with math, something I never thought would happen.

If you're a student, buy this.

If you're struggling with math, buy this.

If you want to try again to master the math that was so bewildering in college, buy this.

If you just want an interesting and engaging read, buy this.

If you're a mathematical genius who does anti-derivates to lull yourself to sleep at night, you can give it a skip.

BEST MATH BOOK EVER!!!
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97 of 113 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Graphics destroyed the usefulness of a good book. May 12, 2010
By St Maus
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The text is very clear and well written.
The price is very reasonable.
The graphics are completely illegible on a Kindle2. This problem has presented itself on many other potentially useful books on the Kindle format. Many times the image is just pasted in without any regard for resolution. Please! make the graphics to suit the device so that the book can be enjoyed the way it was intended.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great start March 7, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book does what it promises , it is not for advanced learners , it is meant for people with little or no background in calculus. It has very few problem sets and does not cover topics like Maxima or Minima, but the purpose of the book is to make you understand what Calculus does and it does a very good job of it. It holds your hand and gently explains what essentially you are doing when you do differentiation or integration conceptually. Which is very critical for clarity and once you have understood this basic you will be willing to go ahead and read a more advanced text on the subject with little fear and more understanding. Even you don't you well have gained a basic understanding of the concepts but my guess is you will !
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blinding Glimpse of the Obvious March 30, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very seldom does have I read a book on Mathematics that treats its subject so well. From the start, covering the why of arithmetic to the excellent explanation of Integration by Partial Fractions to the end, where the author presents Applications of Calculus, the book is easy to read, easy to understand and doesn't treat any subject trivially. While there are no rigorous proofs in this book, it does present the "WHY" of what you are learning and sets one up to go out and find or perform the proofs if you want to.

I have a good background in Calculus, but it was a struggle to learn initially. Because of this, I appreciate an excellent explanation of the subject. I read this book in an evening, and came away with an even BETTER understanding an appreciation of the beauty of Calculus.

And finally, a statement one doesn't hear too much about Mathematics books, it leaves you wanting MORE by the same author.

Excellent.
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28 of 34 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ok as far as it goes May 8, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Ok as far as it goes--- which is not very far. I had bought the book trying to investigate different approaches to teaching calculus and was pleased to see that the author was a teacher at a community college which I have been for the last sixteen years. Eagerly digging into the pages that followed I found myself scratching my head trying to figure out how a student could gain anything but a less than perfunctory understanding of calculus from this book. In fairness the author takes on the herculean task of trying to bring students from a developmental mathematics level into the bright shining light of calculus in a mere 98 poorly formatted pages. Starting at addition the topics chosen meander through arithmetic and algebra bypassing trigonometry altogether to end up at calculus at approximately the midway point of the book- needless to say this tornadic approach leaves many topics untouched. The calculus part of the text highlights the derivative and integral and ends on some examples of how calculus can be used in different fields. Limits, a foundational idea in calculus, are barely discussed but unexpectedly techniques such as integration by substitution and parts are introduced. I understand the desire to introduce students to the ideas contained in calculus but the approach taken in this book lacks mathematical rigor while at the same time delivers a less than true working knowledge of the topic. When I bought the eBook I was hoping to enhance how I explain calculus topics to struggling students in different ways but after reading this text this quest is yet unrealized.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The way math should be taught the first time July 1, 2011
By Galen
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a book that takes you from addition to calculus in just a few chapters. The author demonstrates how concepts are built upon each other such that the relationship between addition and multiplication and between multiplication and exponents seems intuitive. This way of presenting the material made much more sense to me then the rote memorization I was taught in school. I definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in calculus. Especially for young people who haven't reached the calculus level yet, this would provide great foundation for what you will learn in school.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No Table of Contents, No Index November 14, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I got the Kindle version, which is cheap (only $3.00). I would have gladly paid more for a version which included a Table of Contents and Subject Index.
I have flipped over most pages of the book and it seems to be a great learning resource. The only problem is You don't know what's included in the book or where to find help on a particular topic unless you read the whole book.
I don't know if the paper version includes a Table of Contents and subject index but I'm guessing it does not, because in the preview pages they don't show and Amazon always includes them in the preview.

If it was a PDF I would do a Table of Contents with links to sections and subsections myself, but being a Kindle version I don't know how to do it.

Alberto Odor, MD
University of California - Davis

TWO WEEKS LATER:
I could convert the Kindle version to RTF format and created a Table of contents in Word which I then exported to PDF. It is 7.5 x 5.5 inches so it shows perfectly on an iPad and the table of contents is linked to the sections in the book. I have raised it fro *** to ***** as I have read the whole book now and it has helped me a lot with my calculus skills. I wish I had the authors email address to send him a copy of the edited PDF.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars cruiser
it is okay
Published 5 days ago by cruiser
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for beginners and for review
If you just want to learn calculus, this book is a great place to start. It is well written with step-by-step illustrations and examples that you can follow the lessons. Read more
Published 1 month ago by JTR Industries
1.0 out of 5 stars Could not get it to download
Tried on various operating systems and different locations. Never got it to download to any of my computers. Since it was only a couple of bucks I gave up. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mark Burk
1.0 out of 5 stars terrible OCR
The kindle version of this book is unreadable, because it appears that it was scanned, and optical character recognition software was used, however the many symbols in the... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Michael Delgaudio
5.0 out of 5 stars great review or introduction
Excellent review for anyone wishing to reacquaint with the fundamentals of calculus. Will retread several more times; especially the calculus part at the end third of the book. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Flash Gordon
5.0 out of 5 stars great for the average student who is shaky on the prerequisites
A terrific explanation and review of the algebra and precalculus that trip up many poorly prepared (or just rusty) students because the calculus teachers and texts assume it is... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Robert Steinmuller M. D.
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't Bother With Reading This Book
The title is misleading. There is nothing intuitive, nothing obvious, and nothing for the casual observer. In fact, there are only few paragraphs about Calculus. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Carl E. Leonard
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok worth a look
Ok no complaints. This fits my interests fine. Would buy it again. Might not be interesting to broad audience. found many topics to explore.
Published 11 months ago by David Lehmann
4.0 out of 5 stars Okay
Read as a refresher since I took calc 20 years ago. It's okay, but would like it to be more applied as that is how I learn. Not sure how a new reader would do.
Published 13 months ago by Kip
2.0 out of 5 stars Not so intuitive
Looks good, but like many such products requires a working knowledge (of algebra) above where it has been pitched, in order to interpret the examples. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Jill
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What is wrong with "cross multiplication"?
Sure, I'll explain. There are two main reasons cross multiplication causes so much trouble. 1st, many people are afraid of fractions and since cross multiplication is painless they try to use it everywhere. Except that 2. Cross multiplication is a special case and has very specific conditions... Read More
Jan 9, 2011 by John Weiss |  See all 4 posts
can you teach yourself calculus? Be the first to reply
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