learning math online
February 26, 2008 9:51 PM   Subscribe

Free math courses online, from very basic to brainiac.

No registration required.
posted by nickyskye (19 comments total) 121 users marked this as a favorite

No partial differential equations, unfortunately.
posted by pravit at 10:17 PM on February 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

@pravit They may be the first and only time that statement has ever been said. Though there is certainly a lot of great stuff in the link.
posted by socalsamba at 10:38 PM on February 26, 2008

Nice. Does anyone know a good topology primers?

Here is a pretty good resource I've found from just googleing "math books online". It seems that there are many good references floating around; Amazing really, to think of all this priceless knowledge to be had for just a paltry effort.
posted by kuatto at 10:48 PM on February 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

That's not brainiac. If you want an example of brainiac from MIT's OCW, look at stuff like this.

No, I don't know what any of that means. I do all sorts of applied math for electrical engineering, but looking at the real braniac math just scares me.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 10:55 PM on February 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

Here's the requisite link to Allen Hatcher's homepage. His 'Algebraic Topology' (free for download!) is by now the standard introductory text on algebraic topology.
posted by kaibutsu at 11:09 PM on February 26, 2008

(And , in fact, is the text for the Open Course Ware link provided just above...)
posted by kaibutsu at 11:11 PM on February 26, 2008

Good, someone on this internet website knows more math than me. I feel better about Metafilter now.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 11:12 PM on February 26, 2008

@pravit They may be the first and only time that statement has ever been said.

Seriously though, if someone knows a good intro to PDEs, I'll be forever grateful. The related AskMe.
posted by pravit at 12:09 AM on February 27, 2008

Thank you thank you thank you! I am considering taking the GRE again after almost 20 years since my last math class and I'll need a refresher for sure...
posted by Stewriffic at 3:41 AM on February 27, 2008

This probably just saved my high school math mark. Thanks!
posted by alon at 5:58 AM on February 27, 2008

[Carefully files away the link for future homeschooling purposes]
posted by Zinger at 6:07 AM on February 27, 2008

Education Portal is a phenomenal resource.

This post almost makes up for the ten minutes of my life I lost watching the "fucking Matt Damon" post yesterday. Thank You.
posted by willie11 at 6:27 AM on February 27, 2008

Seriously though, if someone knows a good intro to PDEs, I'll be forever grateful.
Chapter 1. You can't solve any of the interesting ones.
Chapter 2. You can't do a very good job of approximating them, either.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:58 AM on February 27, 2008 [2 favorites]

This comment by projectileboy on Hacker News a while back was inspirational to me (though you may differ on the details of what he's advocating). The whole thread is valuable, in fact.
posted by rodii at 7:26 AM on February 27, 2008 [3 favorites]

And for those of us who are seriously math impaired, let me recommend this site for those horrible homework questions. It more or less taught me how to simplify fractions again the other night - without it, all would have been lost.
posted by mygothlaundry at 7:28 AM on February 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

For realz, I'm going to learn math this time.

I know there are a lot of math-heads 'round these parts. It has never come easy for me - never been intuitive the way it seems to be for some people. I never really hated it (except for geometry) - I loved algebra, and trig, although I was terrible at them. I was one of the very few among my friends in high school whose verbal SATs outshone those of the math portion (by, like, 300 points, or something absurd). And I never understood that - I thought, but you speak English all the time - how can you not do well on the verbal portion of the test?

I've always been attracted to the part of mathematics that's so high up there it's closer to philosophy (the way I see it, anyway), and I've always wished that I had a better grounding in the basics so I could have a better appreciation for the higher end of things. Maybe this will help.

Thanks, nicky, for another fantastic post!
posted by rtha at 8:25 AM on February 27, 2008

Happy day!

This is great and very timely. I'm seconding rtha on the maths-as-philosophy bit. I've been on a maths-related reading binge for the last month or so and four tomes later (recommending 'Number - the language of Science' to anyone interested) I'm itching to actually DO some of this stuff to get further in - was toying with the idea of taking a higher course. This is right on the button, thanks very much!
posted by freya_lamb at 12:17 PM on February 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

Just since they haven't been added yet, here are two more ridiculously big link pages to lots of maths textbooks/lecture notes; their material is mostly 3rd level.

Mind you, big lists like these are intimidating at first when you're starting off; if you were just starting higher maths (i.e. 3rd level) then I'd suggest probably an applied maths POV via Gilbert Strang's Linear Algebra video lectures (or a similar source) and perhaps his Calculus book. But then again, YMMV.
posted by jhayes at 4:40 AM on March 2, 2008

I hate to say this, but imho it's totally impossible to learn online. Get yourself a book relevant to your course which includes lots of problems (yes, you know, the one with printed pages), and scrap paper/calculator/pen. Find somewhere quiet. Read each topic, then solve lots and lots and lots of problems. Write concise revision sheets (to keep). Do your math EVERYDAY (little and often).
posted by doutzen at 2:26 AM on March 5, 2008

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