Luigi Del Debbio
Professor of Theoretical Physics
Location University of Edinburgh
you make a very good point. For those who enjoy mathematical derivations, it is good to see a few explicit calculations. Otherwise you can accept the outcomes and move on.
The interesting point to note is that some principles like the conservation of energy, momentum, angular momentum, which are easy to prove in classical mechanics remain true...
if you are interested in the more technical details, I would recommend the Feynman lectures in Physics. They do not cover all the material in this course, but they will give a solid grounding in classical/quantum mechanics and electromagnetism. And they are "fun" to read.
The material presented this week is meant to give an idea of some of the fundamental laws of physics in the more familiar context of classical mechanics. In these simple examples we can actually derive such basic laws. The same conservation laws will be used in describing the dynamics of elementary particles.
One general comment about the level of mathematical skills that are required.
When writing this course, it was very difficult to judge the level of the audience. In our experience, we have met students who struggle with manipulating vectors, linear superpositions, sums over dummy variables, etc.
If you find these topics easy, then there is nothing to...
I have uploaded a new set of lecture notes for my section of the course, WITH the exercises at the end of each section. I have also corrected some typos that you have spotted. Thanks for that!!
Apologies for any confusion that this may have generated.
PS: U is another symbol often used for the potential energy.