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A First Course in Scientific Computing:
Symbolic, Graphic, and Numeric Modeling Using Maple, Java, Mathematica, and Fortran90
Rubin H. Landau

Rubin H. Landau, Winner of the 2006 Undergraduate Computational Engineering and Sciences Award, The Krell Institute
One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2005

Hardcover with CD-ROM | 2005 | $115.00 | £95.95 | ISBN: 9780691121833
512 pp. | 7 x 10 | 50 line illus.
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This book offers a new approach to introductory scientific computing. It aims to make students comfortable using computers to do science, to provide them with the computational tools and knowledge they need throughout their college careers and into their professional careers, and to show how all the pieces can work together. Rubin Landau introduces the requisite mathematics and computer science in the course of realistic problems, from energy use to the building of skyscrapers to projectile motion with drag. He is attentive to how each discipline uses its own language to describe the same concepts and how computations are concrete instances of the abstract.

Landau covers the basics of computation, numerical analysis, and programming from a computational science perspective. The first part of the printed book uses the problem-solving environment Maple as its context, with the same material covered on the accompanying CD as both Maple and Mathematica programs; the second part uses the compiled language Java, with equivalent materials in Fortran90 on the CD; and the final part presents an introduction to LaTeX replete with sample files.

Providing the essentials of computing, with practical examples, A First Course in Scientific Computing adheres to the principle that science and engineering students learn computation best while sitting in front of a computer, book in hand, in trial-and-error mode. Not only is it an invaluable learning text and an essential reference for students of mathematics, engineering, physics, and other sciences, but it is also a consummate model for future textbooks in computational science and engineering courses.

  • A broad spectrum of computing tools and examples that can be used throughout an academic career
  • Practical computing aimed at solving realistic problems
  • Both symbolic and numerical computations
  • A multidisciplinary approach: science + math + computer science
  • Maple and Java in the book itself; Mathematica, Fortran90, Maple and Java on the accompanying CD in an interactive workbook format


"Essential. . . . Rubin Landau offers a practical introduction to the world of scientific computing or numerical analysis. He introduces not only the concepts of numerical analysis, but also more importantly the tools that can be used to perform scientific computing. . . . The presentation is particularly useful because real-life examples with real code and results are included."--Choice

"Not only is [this book] an invaluable learning text and an essential reference for students of mathematics, engineering, physics, and other sciences, but it is also a consummate model for future textbooks in computational science and engineering courses."--Mathematical Reviews

"The contents can be taught in lab-based courses at the undergraduate level. Much of the material covered is usually addressed in separate books. Therefore, the book is also suitable for independent study by graduate students and professional who wish to learn one or more of the languages in a comprehensive way with the emphasis kept on problem-solving."--Frits Agterberg, Computers and Geosciences

"The colloquial and tutorial approach might help alleviate the many practical problems associated with incorporating computational applications into a more traditional lecture environment. The text provides many concrete and programming examples in action and illustrates how much you can accomplish with a few well-chosen tools. . . . [S]tudents impressed with the text's workbook style and reference book quality will add it to their bookshelves and return to it often."--Michael Jay Schillaci, IEEE Computing in Science and Engineering


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