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The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra Paperback – Illustrated, May 1, 2012
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Praise for the Manga Guide Series
—Choice Magazine on The Manga Guide to Databases
“Stimulus for the next generation of scientists.”
—Scientific Computing on The Manga Guide to Molecular Biology
“A great fit of form and subject. Recommended.”
—Otaku USA Magazine on The Manga Guide to Physics
“The Manga Guides definitely have a place on my bookshelf.”
—Smithsonian’s "Surprising Science"
“The art is charming and the humor engaging. A fun and fairly painless lesson on what many consider to be a less-than-thrilling subject.”
—School Library Journal on The Manga Guide to Statistics
“A single tortured cry will escape the lips of every thirty something biochem major who sees The Manga Guide to Molecular Biology: ‘Why, oh why couldn’t this have been written when I was in college?’”
—The San Francisco Examiner
About the Author
- Publisher : No Starch Press; 1st edition (May 1, 2012)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 264 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1593274130
- ISBN-13 : 978-1593274139
- Item Weight : 1.1 pounds
- Dimensions : 7 x 0.67 x 9.25 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #317,339 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
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My daughter was not impressed. "It's just algebra with matrices, Mom."
By the time it arrived she had made it 3 lessons into MIT Open courseware (our community college does not offer linear algebra) and felt no need at all for the book, but she thumbed through it, and actually found it interesting enough to start reading. She quickly found it so intriguing and great for conceptualizing that she ended up taking a time-out from the course so as to finish the book. She strongly endorses it.
I suspect that the maths student who would enjoy this book would be one who is well on her way and is just looking for a supplement, but if one is hitting up against the ceiling, this comic book probably won't help.
I took Linear Algebra in college as part of my Computer Science curriculum. Having persisted through three semesters of Calculus by will power alone, and having heard horror stories about Linear Algebra, I duly invested the effort required to get a decent grade. With that hurdle behind me, thus completing my mathematics requirements, I focused the rest of my college thoughts exclusively on computers until the last residual matrix reduced to null in the outer reaches of my mind space. I was free!
But then the unexpected happened. Years later, firmly settled into my minimal-math computing career, an intermittent musing continued to flounder about in the back of my brain. "What is Linear Algebra? Why don't I feel like I learned anything?" I eventually realized that my course's extraordinary emphasis on crunching numbers, solving simplistic problems, and working out proofs had left a giant void in my conceptual understanding of the topic. If somebody had asked me at that time what Linear Algebra is and what it's good for, my response would have been a face slowly contorting into frustration.
When I stumbled upon The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra, I just knew I had to read it. In addition to the unabated glee that came from broadcasting such a ridiculous selection to my Goodreads comrades, I thought, "Maybe these Japanese cartoons can teach me what the university failed to?" If I learned a little bit about martial arts and love in the process, so be it.
This book exceeded my expectations. It's absurd and unassuming, and these two things combine to make it impossible to put down. I was knee deep in matrices before the "What the heck am I reading?" factor wore off. And to my delight, I found myself understanding matrix and vector algebra in a more intuitive way thanks to the book's highly visual presentation of darn near everything.
It's this latter point that makes the book so effective. It's a comic book about math. There are no rules. Whatever is proper in a math textbook - whether it's visual consistency, formal language, or being rigidly organized, compartmentalized, and sterilized - this is of no concern to Misa as she works around Reiji's karate schedule to tutor him on eigenvectors. There's no pressure for it to conform to comic book conventions, either. Every chapter concludes with several pages of math, sans the comic flair.
While this is not a substitute to "comprehensive literature," it may in fact be good enough to get the job done. The proof is in the purin. I've recently ventured into the 3D video game programming landscape, and I'm using vector and matrix math concepts to solve some fairly sophisticated problems of my own creation, a feat that would have been virtually impossible without the intuitive understanding I gleaned from this book.
So what is this book, then? To my mind, it's simply the most effective way to convey the conceptual framework of Linear Algebra. It's not a textbook. There are no homework problems. But, then again, cranking through problems with a pencil and paper won't necessarily get you any closer to understanding what it's all about. Besides, can't computers do that?
By LooLoo on December 13, 2019
Really love this book. The manga starts with a girl who needs help getting through her linear algebra course, so her sibling arranges a tutor for her. What I love about this set-up is that
(1) you feel like you're getting a teacher because the tutor talks things out and asks/answers conceptual questions and
(2) she asks side questions and pauses when confused (and sometimes I was right along with her).
Even having finally taken a LA course, this book does a really good job of giving all of the variables and terminology meaning beyond simple matrices and equations. I would definitely recommend reading this while taking your LA course, it ties everything together so well.
Top reviews from other countries
Buy this book. It's worth it. I finished it in a day (basically the entire day, including checking online for problems that I could try solving.) Story is cute too, I love manga :)
Idioma: Inglés. Asequible. En las historietas usa un inglés de la calle, fresco pero inteligible. En las explicaciones usa un inglés correcto y claro, todo muy bien explicado.
Cómic: Dibujos muy, muy buenos, y la historia que sustenta las explicaciones es muy, muy buena.
Contenido-Temario: Empieza con cosas muy simples y básicas, luego entra de lleno con matrices, las operaciones básicas, y va subiendo de nivel hasta distintas formas de obtener la matriz inversa, determinantes etc. Lo mejor de los dos capítulos de matrices es que los esquemas y la forma de enseñarlo es muy clara y explicativa, se pueden seguir sin lápiz ni papel, pero es conveniente tenerlos, para rehacer los ejemplos, y es entonces cuando se adquiere el asombro de ver que todo es bastante fácil. Los dos capítulos dedicados a vectores siguen ese esquema de ser todo muy claro, con ejemplos muy bien organizados, y de complicación ascendente, y de nuevo con el objetivo de que se pillen los conceptos, las ideas, que no sólo se aprendan rutinas de cálculo. Los dos últimos capítulos están dedicados a transformaciones lineales, y autovalores-autovectores. Nunca los había visto explicados de esa forma tan simple, donde se pilla enseguida el sentido de los cálculos.
Libro obligatorio para el que vaya a tener en la universidad una asignatura de álgebra. Hay que echarle tiempo, no es un tebeo. Si se trabaja este libro, se tiene mucho adelantado.