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Big Karl
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Hello everyone, I am looking forward to understanding physics in depth.

Unfortunately, I've been screwed by my school system and I'll be taking Pre-Cal in community college(from there I hope to get in a good 4-year).

 

I am in the process of teaching myself Algebra 2. I am almost done.

I know basic physics, I know General and Special relativity, and read QED by Feynman. Thats about it.

 

I want to study deep physics and I am really intimidated by the math you guys use because I don't understand it. So I'm processing everything in the Layman, but I want to study deep and pure equations. I was focused heavily on social sciences until I found a "handy physics answers book", which gradually swerved my interests.

 

I also feel extremely embarrassed by the fact that I am a year behind (almost)everyone in Math. Hopefully I can learn some great things from this forum!

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Einstein once wrote to his future wife, Maleva, who was also a physics student, "Don't worry about your troubles with math; they are nothing compared to mine." So evidently it was at least possible to do decent physics circa 1900 without much talent for math.

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Einstein once wrote to his future wife, Maleva, who was also a physics student, "Don't worry about your troubles with math; they are nothing compared to mine." So evidently it was at least possible to do decent physics circa 1900 without much talent for math.

 

Yeah I'm sure that math back then was minimal at best :/

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Einstein_field_equations

 

I always wondered what exactly was meant by "Einstein sucked at math!" I'm shooting for he was mathematically dyslectic like myself, always flipping signage and losing proper order when writing things out or doing them mentally but that doesn't really jive well with that movie IQ ....

 

:)

Edited by Xittenn
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I always wondered what exactly was meant by "Einstein sucked at math!" I'm shooting for he was mathematically dyslectic like myself, always flipping signage and losing proper order when writing things out or doing them mentally...

 

I think that it is true that physicist at the beginning of the 1900's were not very well versed in the emerging mathematics at the time. Moreover, mathematical ideas were becoming more important in physics. Quantum mechanics requires the theory of operators and relativity requires differential geometry. Before this, "classical mathematical physics" is all about differential equations and special functions.

 

Hilbert stated it quite nicely,

 

"Physics is becoming too difficult for the physicists."

David Hilbert

 

Before this time, most people doing physics were also doing mathematics. For some reason modern mathematics went off on its own during this period.

 

Since the 1980's physics and mathematics have started to converge more and more. I think this can be understood as being due to the interplay of geometry, topology and algebra with quantum field theory and string theory. For example, topological and conformal field theory are now reputable pursuits within mathematics. More general quantum field theory is heading that way also.

 

I am sure that the future theoretical physicist will require more and more tools from pure mathematics. Interestingly, the other way round also maybe true. Ideas from physics are becoming more and more important in pure mathematics. Witten is the pioneer of using physics ideas in mathematics.

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It's funny, I was watching this movie that happened to be on TV today Sneekers. There is a scene with a guest speaker, a mathematician studying cryptography. He gets really excited during his presentation on Cryptography about the emerging developments in Number Theory, Large Cardinals and Homomorphisms. The movie was made in the early 90s depicting the late 80s.

 

Towards the OP I am 31 years old and I do not have any education beyond a high school diploma. I must say I have taken a rather different approach to your problem. I too wish to understand the physics and I strive to attain a higher understanding in the field. I however have avoided learning the more in depth studies in the field in favor of studying mathematics first. I have never understood the individuals who have sought to learn physics from a purely philosophical stance as to me it would seem rather benign.

 

Today I have been contemplating wavenumbers and how group theory would play a role in modeling quantum mechanical phenomena .... I have this text on my shelf at home http://bit.ly/904UCn and it requires some pretty intensive mathematical skill. It delves pretty deeply into quantum mechanics given that it is phys chem and extends the gas models using much of the basics. I'm just an enthusiast so for me it is still pretty difficult even despite its 90% differential content.

 

In line with what yoda was saying it is rather difficult to imagine someone understanding any of it without the knowledge of precalc. I think a lot of young men wish to have a great knowledge and often overlook the details ... Taking the time to actually go over the reality and setting aside ones personal feelings toward the matter would, in many situations like this, be highly beneficial. Maybe? I know I for one envy those who have accomplished great things in these fields and it hurts me to think that I may never do so myself. I may be biased in saying these things as I look back and wish I had had someone there to have said this to me when I was younger and in a better position to move forward and grow and be strong.

 

o.o

Edited by Xittenn
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I'm surprised that this hasn't come up. This is an excellent resource. It's called MIT OpenCourseWare. It's actual lectures put up online for free. I used it to teach myself Linear Algebra because my professor sucked. It should help you immensely.

It should also be noted that other schools do this as well. The video lectures are also available free on both iTunesU and YouTube.

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Thank you guys very much, right now my goal is calculus and differential equations. They can both help me in my economic and physics observations. I feel like I'm climbing a mountain.

 

I'm surprised that this hasn't come up. This is an excellent resource. It's called MIT OpenCourseWare. It's actual lectures put up online for free. I used it to teach myself Linear Algebra because my professor sucked. It should help you immensely.

 

Awesome, I always wondered how parabolas were measured. I find these very useful ^___^

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