- Paperback: 578 pages
- Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 2 edition (May 3, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1449392512
- ISBN-13: 978-1449392512
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.2 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #506,211 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Physics for Game Developers: Science, math, and code for realistic effects 2nd Edition
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Science, math, and code for realistic effects
About the Author
David Bourg is a Naval Architect involved in various military and commercial proposal, design, and construction efforts. Since 1998, David has served as an independent consultant working for various regional clients engaged in both commercial and military shipbuilding where he provides design and analysis services including but not limited to concept design, proposal writing, detailed design and analysis, visualization, and software development among other services. He coordinated and led the winning design and proposal effort for the US Coast Guard Point Class (patrol boat) Replacement Program. In 2006, David joined fellow Naval Architect Kenneth Humphreys to form MiNO Marine, LLC, a naval architecture and marine professional services firm.
In addition to Physics for Game Developers, David has published two other books. He earned a PhD in Engineering and Applied Science in 2008 from the University of New Orleans. He has served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of New Orleans School of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, where he has taught various courses since 1993.
Ever since his father read A Brief History of Time to him in middle school, Bryan Bywalec wanted to be an astrophysicist. While he will always have a passion for pure physics, he became more and more obsessed in high school with the application of those physical principles he was learning. Having been around sailboats his entire life, his decision to seek a degree in Naval Architecture at the University of New Orleans surprised few.
While working on his degree, Mr. Bywalec was employed as a network administrator for the College of Engineering. Having an office in an electronics lab, he explored the world of enterprise computing and became very interested in high performance clusters, remote administration of desktops, and robotics.
Upon graduating in 2007, he began his career at MiNO Marine, LLC and, under the guidance of David Bourg and Kenneth Humphreys, now focuses on finite element analysis of complex welded steel structures. His structural analysis work depends largely on the accurate approximations of non-linear physical systems. Bryan has completed several computational fluid dynamics simulations of exhaust gases from ship stacks and current flow around offshore structures.
In addition to his work as a naval architect, Bryan strives to create innovative ways to connect everyday objects to various control networks. From unlocking door locks via text message to developing a real time street car tracking program, he constantly searches for opportunities to integrate technology into his life.
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The math is wrong. The assumptions are wrong. The code is broken. Try downloading some samples from this book before you waste your money on it. Notice some oddities? Infinitely oscillating boxes at rest? The authors clearly know how horrible their physics systems work which is why they try to hide behind short simulation times and other tricks to fool the viewer.
Take a look at the previous edition's errata to understand just how broken this book is: [...] (note the color legend and how many are a "Serious Technical Mistake").
The authors are at best horribly incompetent and more likely flat out frauds. There's absolutely nothing of value here.
So with that in mind, I waited... and waited. In the meantime, I read through the most beginner of books discussing physics as a component of game development, books specifically intended to help intermediate developer, and even invested in a few large hardbound tomes specifically devoted to game physics and physics engine development. Finally, one day with visiting my favorite technical bookstore a year or two ago I happened upon a well worn used copy for Physics for Game Developers and bought it, resigning myself to never seeing a second edition made. After all, what had changed about physics that warranted a new version?
Which brings us to 2013 and the release after more than a decade, of the second edition of Physics for Game Developers. So why the new edition?
Well, for starters, the content has been significantly expanded upon, and the new edition is close to twice as long as the old one. Mostly responsible for this expansion is the inclusion of an extremely exciting new section (for game developers that is) devoted to digital physics-- that is, the physics associated with new gaming inputs and sensors, like touch screens, accelerometers, 3D input devices (think Kinect or Playstation Move), and even pressure sensors and GPS devices. Specific nuts and bolts discussion of the physics of these devices has been a long time coming in book form, and they don't disappoint. However, if you're looking for a basic discussion of these sensors (or for that matter any of the modeling discussed here), or for code tutorials, or if you're just getting started with programming, it might be best to look elsewhere to start with and return to this book once you've cut your teeth on a few Web tutorials or a beginner's book.
This doesn't in any way reduce Bourg and Bywalec's book; I'm simply trying to say that this book is for intermediate programmers who have some knowledge of physics (and the mathematics involved with it) to start with. This also shouldn't be a surprise at all, since all a prospective reader needs to do is read the short section on "What We Assume You Know".
As a reference for physics as it pertains to game programming, for my money this is just about the best book available of the subject, since it's succinct and well-written while remaining fairly comprehensive. Just about anything you could typically want to model in a game is discussed, from physics fundamentals and rigid-body dynamics (in Parts I and II) to physical modeling (in Part III). Instead of digging through a dozen lighter books for just that one example to help answer a question, I will always reach for this one. The inclusion of digital physics in this new edition has only improved its quality and utility.
I would highly recommend Physics for Game Developers, specifically in its second edition, to intermediate game programmers who have at least a basic understanding of physics. This is an excellent, well-written reference for any concept in physics that pertains to game programming and to gaming sensors.
At the beginning, each chapter covers a fundamental aspects of physics. Later they go into examples that could be used in a game. Some of the topics covered include: Newton’s laws of motion, kinematics, force, kinetics, collisions, projectiles, particles, rigid-bodies, springs, aircraft, boats, cars, guns, sports. In the last section it goes over some emerging technology and how they work, like touch screens, motion-sensors, 3D displays, and the physics of sound. I very much enjoyed the whole book, and liked that there were practical examples to go along with every topic.
Many technical books can get lost in the math equations, but I found this text to have a good amount of explanation and not too many long proofs. This could be a pro or a con. On one hand it makes reading it a little more straight-forward, but on the other-hand, it may leave out some important details when it comes time to create your own implementation. I’m not sure I would want to base a physics engine solely on this book. It’s not that it was bad, but it was more of a general concept thing than giving you all the code. That said, there is a good amount of code in the book, it just may not be as complete as some other sources.
Overall I was satisfied with Physics for Game Developers. It may not be my favorite physics book (I found Game Physics Engine Development to be a lot better for my purposes), it still seemed worth reading. Now I am beginning to realize the creating a physics engine will not be easy, but the more I read the more I feel capable of this task. I think the book has helped.