An introduction to electronics
|An introduction to electronics|
From the introduction:
Electronics is that branch of science which describes the properties and control of electrons and other rudimentary particles which, in correlation with energy, constitute matter. Energy is the agency by which matter is united, disintegrated, or displaced, and appears in many diverse forms, such as mechanical, chemical, thermal, electrical, magnetic, and atomic energy. The matter is the substance of which any physical material is composed.
The science might have been called "photonics" or "neutronic" with reference to other rudimentary particles but "electronics" was chosen to emphasize the prominence of the most active ingredient of matter.
Electronics have given man a better understanding of the hidden resources of nature. The discovery of 'the electron would still have attained enormous importance if no application of its properties had been made to radio communication, sound-motion pictures, or television. The science of electronics has opened a vista of applications which appear to be limitless and beyond our imagination.
We have seen various applications which lend comfort, enlightenment, and amusement to mankind but these uses may pale into insignificance compared with the development of new materials and new sources of food and energy.
The purpose in part of this book is to acquaint the layman with some of the outstanding new concepts of the physical world together with the implications of their probable effect on his manner of living. The understanding of any of the special or advanced sciences is greatly simplified by a preliminary study of physics, chemistry, and mathematics.
Although such preparation gives the student a general knowledge of the basic principles of the fundamental sciences, consequent attainment of greater importance is the acquirement of a scientific vocabulary.
The author is always sceptical of the reason when a man says he "hasn't a scientific mind." It is more probable that he has not developed the habit of referring steadily to a comprehensive dictionary for the meaning of unfamiliar words. Beneficial reading of scientific literature requires not only an accurate understanding of scientific words but of common words as well. Another handicap to accurate reading is the ascription of wrong meanings to important words.
Thereafter the subsequent reading cannot make sense. Students of all grades often fail examinations not because they do not know the answers but because they do not know the exact meaning of the questions. The reason why many persons get nothing out of a legal decision, a doctor's report, or even an income-tax blank is because they do not know the meaning of the words.
The first requirement for an adequate understanding of electronics without previous contact with the fundamental sciences is the possession and constant use of an up-to-date dictionary. The lay reader will also experience some difficulty at first in comprehending some of the astronomical numbers that pervade the literature on electronics.
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