ME 201/MTH 281/ME 400/CHE 400
ABOUT THIS WEB SITE
Updated August 11, 2011
This web site has all of the handouts and Mathematica notebooks for the course. All text files are in pdf, which means that your browser will download them. You can double click on the downloaded file to open it. Alternatively you can set your browser preferences to respond to the first click by opening the pdf file in Acrobat or Acrobat reader. Once the file has been opened, you can read it on the screen, print out a copy, or save it as a file on your disk.
The movies on this web site require QuickTime. This may be downloaded from Apple for either the Mac OS or a Windows environment . When you click on a movie, it will be downloaded and played by QuickTime. As of this writing, there are some annoying incompatibility issues between some browsers and the display of QuickTime movies on the Mac. It is a complicated situation, and whether or not the movie plays seems to depend on all of the following: the browser; the version of the browser; whether the browser is set to 32-bit mode or 64-bit mode; the particular movie you have selected; the version of Quicktime; the version of Mac OS X. Even worse, there is not a consistent response - the same combination may give different results at different times. In general, I would recommend Firefox in 32-bit mode. (The switch between 32 and 64 bits can be made in the Get Info panel for the browser.) Google Chrome also seems to do well with the movies. My experiments with Windows are much more limited, but I have had no trouble playing the movies in Windows XP with Firefox and with Internet Explorer. I don't recommend Safari for the movies (looks like the Apple Quicktime programmers and the Safari programmers don't talk to each other).
All of the Mathematica notebooks on the course web site are written in Mathematica version 8.0.1. There are several options for using these notebooks. You can set your browser preferences to open files of type .nb with Mathematica. Then when you click on a Mathematica notebook on the web site, your browser will open the notebook in Mathematica. Another option is to use the new Mathematica Internet plugin (available free from Wolfram). When this plugin is installed, clicking on a Mathematica notebook from your browser will give you an executable form of the notebook directly in your browser. In the case of Firefox, you will have to use the preferences to tell Firefox to use the plugin.
In the interests of saving space and decreasing download times, most of the Mathematica notebooks for this course are stored in unexecuted form. To restore the output, you can simply evaluate the notebook after you have downloaded it. If you don't have Mathematica on your machine, you can still view the notebooks, with all of the output, by selecting the pdf version of the notebook.
The web site is organized in a self-explanatory way. The first page that you see will have links to all other materials. In addition, the first page has a bulletin board which will be used for announcements about the course. Please check the bulletin board frequently, as it may contain important information such as changes in due dates, changes in office hours, or corrections to homework problems.
On the first page of the web site, there is a link to homework and exams from fall 2010. You may find some of this material useful in working homework or preparing for exams.