Review of Fundamentals of Applied Dynamics by James H. Williams Jr.
Fundamentals of Applied Dynamics is an introductory engineering textbook by James H. Williams Jr., a professor emeritus of mechanical engineering at MIT. The book covers the history of dynamics and the dynamical analyses of mechanical, electrical, and electromechanical systems. It also introduces the concepts of chaos, fractals, and nonlinear dynamics.
The book is divided into three parts: Part I deals with the basic principles of dynamics, such as Newton's laws, conservation laws, kinematics, and energy methods. Part II applies these principles to various types of systems, such as particles, rigid bodies, fluids, and circuits. Part III explores the advanced topics of nonlinear dynamics, chaos, and fractals, with examples from biology, physics, and engineering.
The book is suitable for undergraduate and graduate students who want to learn the fundamentals of applied dynamics and its applications to various fields. It is also a useful reference for researchers and practitioners who work with dynamical systems. The book is well-written, clear, and comprehensive, with numerous examples, exercises, and illustrations. It also includes a CD-ROM that contains MATLAB codes for solving some of the problems in the book.
Fundamentals of Applied Dynamics is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to understand the dynamics of physical systems and their behavior under different conditions. It is a classic textbook that reflects the author's extensive experience and expertise in teaching and research.
One of the strengths of the book is its historical perspective. The author traces the development of dynamics from the ancient Greeks to the modern era, highlighting the contributions of various scientists and mathematicians, such as Galileo, Newton, Euler, Lagrange, Hamilton, Maxwell, PoincarÃ, and Lorenz. The author also shows how the concepts of dynamics have influenced other disciplines, such as astronomy, geophysics, biomechanics, and robotics.
Another strength of the book is its pedagogical approach. The author explains the concepts and methods of dynamics in a logical and intuitive way, using examples from everyday life and engineering practice. The author also provides many exercises and problems at the end of each chapter, with varying levels of difficulty and complexity. Some of the problems require the use of MATLAB or other software tools to solve them. The author also provides hints and solutions for some of the problems in the appendix.
A possible limitation of the book is its breadth and depth. The book covers a lot of topics and material in a single volume, which may be overwhelming for some readers. The book also assumes some prior knowledge of mathematics and physics, such as calculus, linear algebra, differential equations, and vector analysis. The book may not be suitable for beginners or students who need more guidance and support in learning dynamics.