Linear Algebra: Step by Step
Linear algebra is a fundamental area of mathematics, and is arguably the most powerful mathematical tool ever developed. It is a core topic of study within fields as diverse as: business, economics, engineering, physics, computer science, ecology, sociology, demography and genetics.
For an example of linear algebra at work, one needs to look no further than the Google search engine, which relies upon linear algebra to rank the results of a search with respect to relevance.
The strength of the text is in the large number of examples and the step by step explanation of each topic as it is introduced. It is compiled in a way that allows distance learning, with explicit solutions to set problems freely available online. The miscellaneous exercises at the end of each chapter comprise questions from past exam papers from various universities, helping to reinforce the reader's confidence. Also included, generally at the beginning of sections, are short historical biographies of the leading players in the field of linear algebra to provide context for the topics covered.
The dynamic and engaging style of the book includes frequent question and answer sections to test the reader's understanding of the methods introduced, rather than requiring rote learning. When first encountered, the subject can appear abstract and students will sometimes struggle to see its relevance; to counter this, the book also contains interviews with key people who use linear algebra in practice, in both professional and academic life. It will appeal to undergraduate students in mathematics, the physical sciences and engineering.
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