The Geometry of Physics
Theodore Frankel

Preface to the Third Edition

A main addition introduced in this third edition is the inclusion of

OVERVIEW O. An Informal Overview of Cartan's Exterior Differential Forms,
Illustrated with an Application to Cauchy's Stress Tensor
which can be read Before starting the Text. This appears at the beginning of the text, before Chapter 1. The only prerequisites for reading this overview are sophomore courses in calculus and basic linear algebra. Many of the geometric concepts developed in the text are previewed here and these are illustrated by their applications to a single extended problem in engineering, namely the study of the Cauchy stresses created by a small twist of an elastic cylindrical rod about its axis.

The new shortened version of Appendix A, dealing with elasticity, requires the discussion of Cauchy stresses dealt with in the Overview. The author believes that the use of Cartan's vector-valued exterior forms in elasticity is more suitable (both in principle and in computations) than the classical tensor analysis usually employed in engineering (which is also developed in the text.)

The new version of Appendix A also contains contributions by my engineering colleague H. Murakami, including his treatment of the Truesdell stress rate.

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