- Hardcover: 680 pages
- Publisher: Pearson; 3 edition (June 25, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0201657023
- ISBN-13: 978-0201657029
- Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 1.7 x 9.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 53 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #108,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Classical Mechanics (3rd Edition) 3rd Edition
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From the Back Cover
For 30 years, this book has been the acknowledged standard in advanced classical mechanics courses. This classic book enables readers to make connections between classical and modern physics -- an indispensable part of a physicist's education. In this new edition, Beams Medal winner Charles Poole and John Safko have updated the book to include the latest topics, applications, and notation to reflect today's physics curriculum.
Top customer reviews
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I would give this book 6 stars if I could. However, the 3rd edition has turned what used to be an excellent book into some kind of butchery and orgy or less relevant topics. For example, very few people doing research actually care about chaos theory, aside from its coolness. While I learned this stuff from a mathematically rigorous standpoint decades ago, I never got to use it since then. Also I find it difficult to discuss chaos theory when stochastic processes are ignored. When doing experiments, you always deal with noise which will actually bury a lot of the interesting dynamics. I really don't see the point of altering Goldstein to cover chaos theory when several excellent textbooks on the topic already exist (Arnold, Devaney, Scheinermann).
I bought the 3rd edition without knowing about its new slant. At the very least, they should have kept what was in the 2nd edition. Instead, they deleted entire sections which I used to love, such as the derivation of the Lagrangian density for an acoustic field (Appendix E). It's totally gone! I am no longer using the 3rd edition copy, and would consider selling it or getting rid of it. I am much better off with my 2nd edition copy.
As far as the actual content in the book, I found the text to be rather dry but useful to learn from regardless. It also would be nice to have more problems in the book. Each chapter seemed to cover a lot of material and each of the topics typically seemed to have maybe only one or two problems. The course I took covered Lagrangian and Hamiltonian mechanics and also covered Poisson brackets and the Hamilton-Jacobi formulation. I found the book Introductory Classical Mechanics by David Morin to be useful and have many problems with detailed solutions for it. It was especially useful for the Lagrangian part of the course. I would recommend buying that book and/or getting a PDF copy of it to supplement this textbook.