on February 26, 2011
I have been using this book for teaching undergraduate students at Engineering Faculty and, as you may guess, I also use MIT book. The book by King does exactly what it is promised by its author (good consistency on its purpose which is not often the case), it is short, attractive and not frightening, it is also self contained, logical development of the topics and so on . So it is an excellent introductory book to the subject based on solved problems and examples. It is very good to have a book that allow students to go forward by themselves, and solved exercises at the end are a good way if stimulating to go beyond what is there. So students can start from those and work out variations, they can try to generalize the results and so on.
The book is well written and chapters are in a natural order, and again, it is good (positive) that the author dedicates some time, detailed analysis of the problems (even that for well trained students may look too long explanations).
I do recommend the book for a first encounter with the specific subject for students in general undergraduate courses from engineering schools, however for students in physics it maybe necessary to have a book with more deep approach to the topics but in that case it will come as very good complement.
It is not easy for me to do a comparative analysis with the MIT book because my impression is that they have slightly different purposes and the MIT book needs additional material and complements, but I like both, so I use both, and what I want to insist is the possibility of King's approach to provide material for a self guided learning into the subject.
on October 1, 2012
This book is the best ever introduction for understanding the wave nature of quantum mechanics. If you start with this book and work through the chapters, there lies a great foundation for the description of nature and the motion of waves in wonderful detail. The mathematics is straightforward with excellent figures and diagrams to aid in understanding the motion of waves and how particles can be described as wave packets. This foundation translates directly to quantum mechanics, including the natural derivation of the Heisenberg Uncertainty principle. Superposition is very elegantly presented for simple waves, including sound waves that describes how beats are generated by two superimposed sound waves that musicians routinely use to finely tune string instruments. This is the way I like it: simple and straight forward mathematics with good physical examples anyone can follow. I would recommend this book as a perfect pre-requisite reading prior to studying QM, or for the general wave description of most physical phenomenon.