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Paperback Introduction to Classical and Modern Optics Book

ISBN: 013124356X

ISBN13: 9780131243569

Introduction to Classical and Modern Optics

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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

A concise, readable introduction to classical and modern optics. Designed for persons interested in the scientific and engineering applications of optics, as well as ophthalmic professionals. Provides... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

2 ratings

OK as a very light introduction to the subject

What is it about optics that makes it so difficult to write not a good book, but a great book on the subject? I've got great books on many subsets of interest in the fields of mathematics, physics, engineering, and computer science, but I am yet to find one on optics that does a complete job. If it has been a long time since you have looked at the subject or you are a complete newcomer to optics, this book is OK for a very cursory introduction. The explanations are very good, but the exercises are too easy. Also, there is absolutely no coverage of fields and waves and their place in the study of optics. To see if you "get" the subject I recommend that you also get Schaum's Outline of Optics. If you think you understand a chapter, go to the equivalent chapter in Schaum's and see if you can work those problems. If you can work the exercises in that book, you truly do grasp the topic. A deeper and more comprehensive work is Optics (4th Edition). This book discusses optics in depth. The problem with it is that the book is expensive plus Hecht goes from Albequerque to Tucson by way of Indianapolis. He gives long-winded explanations punctuated with historic asides that just sidetrack the reader. Finally there is Introduction to Modern Optics. The book is inexpensive and accessible and includes most of the underlying mathematics you need to know. Its problem is that there are no exercises and no examples. The sad fact is you will probably need all of the books I just mentioned to tutor yourself on optics. Start with this book, though.

Yes and No

A previous reviewer has suggested that this book's breezy style contributes to readability but limits the utility of the book for those who seek a substantive and quantitative understanding of optics. In this he is correct. In his assertion that the book's oversimplifications are, "presumably," appropriate for optometry students, he is mistaken. To suggest this is analagous to suggesting that cliff's notes are acceptable for students of physics but not of literature. After all, physicists, bless their sweet souls, could not comprehend the full text versions!If you are a student in an introductory optics course (in any field), this book's style may help you get your footing. If you are not a beginner, or you want to understand the mathematical basis (derivations) of paraxial optics' formalisms and assumptions, this book is not for you.Of course, it would be absurd to suggest that any work is, by itself, sufficient for the study of any discipline.
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