About thoughtlesslaborer

This is not my real name. I am a soon-to-be high school senior who's terrified, because I plan to make it as grueling and difficult as I possibly can for the sake of convenience. I'll have to try my best and keep my wits above me as I give myself to fate and fervor and frustration. I'd like to call myself intrepid, but I really just want to have fun and be productive... Goal 1: Perfect Attendance Goal 2: Maintain a Blog Goal 3: Maintain a Penpal Relationship

Titles are optional?

Ahaha. I admit I’m not the most social creature in the world… but even at a prom, I’m sitting around on a petty laptop doing blog work on a blog I’m not even dedicated to… Ahaha.

Never mind that, I was originally going to write a self-inferiorating blog post that’s probably only self-provoked. But that would be pointless, so I’ll switch to something else.

I wish I were thoughtless.


Book Wants, Future Plans, and Random Musings

God, I suck at updating. Maybe once a week would be better?

Alright, here’s a list of books that I plan to get.

I guess I’ll make it a goal to get these books within the next decade or so. And then I’ll have a proper library, or at least the start of one.

Why am I writing this? Mainly another thought depository. I’ve been making a wishlist on Amazon, but it’s been getting cluttered, so I’ll dump my primary do-wants here. I’ll also throw in prices, so I can determine an order to go about doing things.

Small Textbooks (books that are inexpensive to buy in the states) That I Want

  • Ordinary Differential Equations – Arnold ~44
  • Linear Algebra Done Right – Axler ~30
  • Quantum Mechanics and Path Integrals – Feynman ~12
  • A Student’s Guide to Maxwell’s Equations – Fleisch ~25
  • A Student’s Guide to Vectors and Tensors – Fleisch ~ 26
  • Organic Chemistry I as a Second Language – Klein ~33
  • Organic Chemistry II as a Second Language – Klein ~34
  • Algebra – Lang ~52
  • Calculus on Manifolds – Spivak ~46
  • Geometrical Vectors – Weinreich ~24

Big Textbooks (books that I’ll have to get international editions or used) That I Want

  • Mathematical Analysis – Apostol ~20, international
  • Organic Chemistry – Clayden et. al. ~60
  • Abstract Algebra – Dummit and Foote ~22, international
  • Introduction to Electrodynamics – Griffiths ~14, international
  • Quantitative Chemical Analysis – Harris ~160
  • Linear Algebra – Hoffman and Kunze ~15, international
  • Vector Calculus, Linear Algebra, and Differential Forms – Hubbard ~100
  • Concise Inorganic Chemistry – Lee ~70
  • Physical Chemistry: A Molecular Approach – McQuarrie and Simon ~25, international
  • Visual Complex Analysis – Needham ~60?, international
  • Principles of Mathematical Analysis – Rudin ~20, international
  • The entire Course of Theoretical Physics Series ~25, international

I’m sure by using a combination of used copies and international editions of textbooks, this shouldn’t be an unmanageable task, to collect all these.

Just some random notes:

  • Apparently, international editions are sold by actual size, and not by inelastic demand. Slim books are worth less than thick books.
  • There aren’t that many chemistry books that have international editions, yet almost every math and physics book that isn’t published by Dover or Springer (though, those tend to be reasonably priced. 10-50 is what I like to see.) has one.

…I need to get a part-time job soon, instead of lusting over books I can’t get. This summer has made me a total NEET. Augh.

Also Summer Assignments. Got to remember to do those.

So what do I do for now, while I don’t own any of the books on my wish list? Well, here’s a tentative plan. It’s not like I’m even close to reading the books I do own already.

Right now, I own these.

  • Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences – Boas
  • Advanced Calculus of Several Variables – Edwards
  • Partial Differential Equations for Scientists and Engineers – Farlow
  • Counterexamples in Analysis – Gelbaum and Olmstead
  • Concrete Mathematics – Graham et. al., international
  • Numerical Methods for Scientists and Engineers – Hamming
  • Introduction to Mechanics – Kleppner and Kolenkow, international
  • Elements of the Theory of Functions and Functional Analysis – Kolmogorov and Fomin
  • Linear Algebra – Lang
  • General Chemistry – Pauling
  • Introduction to Quantum Mechanics with Applications to Chemistry – Pauling and Wilson
  • Electricity and Magnetism – Purcell, international
  • A Book of Abstract Algebra – Pinter
  • Elementary Real and Complex Analysis – Shilov
  • Chemistry: The Molecular Nature of Matter and Change – Silberberg, international
  • Calculus – Spivak
  • Ordinary Differential Equations – Tenenbaum and Pollard
  • How to Prove It: A Structured Approach – Velleman

Senior year of High School:

  1. First, I need to dedicate myself to reading Spivak’s Calculus, Velleman’s How to Prove It and Graham’s Concrete Mathematics. That’ll probably take up a good amount of time, and it’ll get me prepared for future mathing. I’ll need to do some proper scheduling to do this. This should have overall precedence, and I should ignore steps 2-5 if they get in the way.
  2. Leisurely read Lang’s Linear Algebra, Pauling’s General Chemistry and Tenenbaum’s Ordinary Differential Equations. I’ve already had calculation-based classes on these subjects, so it’s not too much. Going through Linear Algebra, though, will be largely re-learning with the mindset of a mathematician. ODEs will mainly be trying to learn new techniques, which isn’t too bad, since ODEs tend to be taught with a “Here’s some tools. Dig with them.” sort of way, and I begrudgingly admit that I like applied math.
  3. If I do take Vector Calculus at my community college, I should read Edwards’s book to addend the teacher’s teachings.
  4. After that, everything’s else for leisure, as I’ll have to take a proper class in those subjects anyways. Shilov and Pinter’s books should have slight precedence, though, being subjects that I have an interest in jumping in asap. If I finish Pauling’s General Chemistry book (which I doubt, since it’s almost 1000 pages), I should look at his QM book as a sequel.
  5. Get through chapter 5 of Purcell.
  6. Take it easy. Further planning will only dig me deeper.

July the Eighteenth

It’s 11:00 AM now. From my perspective, while community college has provided much opportunity to me, both pragmatically and intellectually, there are some pretty bad limitations. This is the one that comes to mind primarily.

Frankly, it’s the other students there, though this tends to be more of a problem with lower-level classes, like the Chemistry class I’m doing now. Quite frankly, it’s kind of obnoxious how some of them seem totally oblivious to the course material. Like, the professor I have does some test review for a few minutes before the test, and he answers questions about a practice test he gives out.But frankly, it seems that there’s always the few students who ask really, in my opinion, obvious questions that are practically the main theme of the stinking chapters. Like for example, asking about how to calculate the relative rates of a reactant or product in a reaction given the numerical rate of another reactant or product in the same reaction.

Oh well, I’m sure if I looked at it from the other side, people would say the same thing about me…

It is now 7:00 PM now. I got a 99 on my Differential Equations test, though there was a bit of inflation. I got partial extra credit, which cancelled out most of the petty algebra mistakes I had made, and he totally discredited a problem and gave 12 free points, but even without these things, I would’ve still had an A, so I’m satisfied. I also think I did well on the Chemistry II test I took today.

I’m still having issues with making algebra mistakes, though, and it’s probably because I do such little homework, so my algebra talons are pretty dull from lack of practice.

I think I’m really starting to like applied mathematics, and it horrifies me. Ahaha…

July the Seventeenth

It is now 10:00 AM. I just finished a lab about freezing points, and now I’m sort of hanging around. The nice thing about labs is that the easier ones don’t take the entire time, and I can just lounge around for a while or go home. Admittedly, though I profess myself to be a science geek, I loathe safety goggles like the plague; my sweat fogs them up and I get dizzy since my eyesight is already pretty sucky.

I guess since I’ve got nothing better to write, I’ll confess what my senior schedule will look like in the worst-case scenario. All AP, by the way.

United States Government
English Literature and Composition
Environmental Science
Physics B
Macroeconomics and Microeconomics

It’s really not that interesting of a schedule, so I’ll dissect why that is the case.

Biology is going to have to be online, so because of that it won’t be a lot of work. I’ll still study hard, but I prefer not having a large amount of busy work.

U.S. Government, at least at my school, is a load of bull. I might do this one online too; my friend had a good experience with the online teacher.

English Literature and Composition kind of worries me; from what I’ve heard, one teacher is kind of toolish, and the other is a psychopath. I’m hoping this isn’t the case, but having one hard class isn’t that big a deal, and I do have an inclination for literary analysis, so I’ll deal.

I’m not worried about Latin since I’m good at it, though not taking it last year might hinder me.

Environmental Science and Physics B, well, a lot of my friends are taking the former, and I like the teacher for the latter. And also, the selection of APs at my school is good, but not perfectly extensive, so I don’t have much choice in the matter.

And I like the teacher for Economics, though he kind of wanders from the lesson plan, and a lot of the kids in his class said that he didn’t really prepare them for the exam. Still, I have faith in him, and I have faith in myself to work hard, and maybe I’ll pull a miracle like I did with European History… which was also taught by him, admittedly.

One thing I dislike about high school is that you have no choice in the matter as to which teacher you get, while in community college, what you pay for is what you get. While much of school comes from personal work, having a crappy teacher can be a really bad turn-off, especially at the high school level, since everyone’s so immature. I’m quite open in saying that I’m immature as well, and maybe a little grudgy.

It’s now 10:00 PM. I slept all afternoon, so that I could do another all-nighter to study for the next test, which, admittedly, I’m wholly unprepared for…

July the Sixteenth

It’s 7:40 right now. I have the awkward situation, virtue of the other classes filling up, of being in a morning class, Chemistry II, and a night class, Ordinary Differential Equations. I’m pretty much just hanging around right now, waiting for the class to start. The teachers here are reasonably good, though the courses are rushed since they’re summer and six-week long.

So, why did I choose to take summer courses here?

  1. I really didn’t have anything better to do over the summer. As a side note, admittedly I feel kind of bad, since everyone around me seems to be doing the class for a prerequisite or something of the sort, and here I am, doing it for fun. It’s sort of awkward, but I’m antisocial and I keep my mouth shut, so it’s not a big deal.
  2. I know I’m going to have to take this class eventually. Or, I guess, I want to. I figured since I already did both parts of Physics C, these classes should be easier. Chemistry shouldn’t require any fancy math… well, not explicitly. So far, there are obvious equations which are the results of solving differential equations, like the algebraic form of the Clausius-Clapeyron equation, and related rates. So I’ve got Math, Physics, and Chemistry down, and I’ll probably do AP Biology just to round out the set.
  3. Preparations for AP Classes, to an extent. Differential Equations, I will say, are just all-encompassing, and they show up in a rather large amount of things, and I plan on just taking the AP Chemistry exam without sitting for the class.
  4. It’s fun hanging out with people with Masters and PhDs in their fields.
  5. I can’t afford to go to a real college over the summer. My family’s poor.

I guess that pretty much sums up the extent. And I’m pretty satisfied. Although the content is compressed, I know that Ordinary Differential Equations is the sort of course that’s pretty cookbook, i.e. it teaches you a bunch of recipes. It’s on the same grounds as Calculus BC. And I’ll have eight months to prepare for AP Chemistry…

It’s 10:00 AM now. Admittedly, I wrote the first version of this part at 8:30, but WordPress didn’t save it properly… I suppose I learned a lesson about blogs… copy and paste before doing anything. I guess that’s what I deserve for relying on Community College wi-fi.

Well, anyways, right now for Chemistry we’re doing rates and equilibrium. It makes me realize how important math is to science, because while some people around me are confused, it’s actually pretty negligible, with regards to intuition, with knowledge of Differential Equations modelling.

One thing that’s nice about Community College is that no one minds if you have a laptop out. Frankly, this helps me, since I can look up derivations and things like that. Like, for example, this equation:

K_p = K_c (RT)^{\Delta n}

Now, I have no damn idea where that formula came from. However, with the power of the internet, I found a proof in ~5 minutes. It’s pretty clean, too, so I’ll probably write it up in LaTeX and post it here.

It’s now 11:00 PM, and I am really exhausted… I had a Differential Equations test today, and I really underestimated it and I squandered the time allotted pretty badly. The teacher drops the lowest test, though, so I’ll have to try harder next time. Now, I finished the test, but I know I made lots of petty algebra mistakes on the way. I really like the class, though. The teacher’s pretty genial, and he knows his stuff. He’s also not terribly insufferable, like some high school teachers can get… For him, it’s just the tests that are insane, and I like a good challenge. I still have to write up a lab report for Chemistry later tonight, and I probably won’t get any sleep tomorrow, since there’s a Chemistry test the day after tomorrow…