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Reviewed by Harry· E. Pence

There are a wide variety of computer books with titles that indicate that they are designed for scientists and engineers, and the purposes of such books vary equally widely. Glider has written this book to fulfill two major goals; it is intended to be a sourcebook of mathematical, statistical, aQd,electronic··engineering programs and to provide examples that may be used as models by those just learning to write computer programs. It accomplishes both of these ends rather well.
This book contains 114 scientific programs designed to be run on an Apple II microcomputer using Applesoft II BASIC. A machine language sub-routine to clear the screen appears in each program, but otherwise there appears to be little that is limited to either a special version of BASIC or a specific computer. There should be no difficulty adapting any of these programs to other systems. A set of two diskettes which includes all of the programs maybe purchased with the book. Most of the programs are relatively short (average length about 40 lines), but those who plan to use the book extensively may find this option to be worth considering.
The library of programs provided can be roughly divided into two groups. The first group, consisting of 49 programs, deals with general mathematical principles and data analysis. These programs involve techniques such as matrix manipulation, various least squares treatments, calculations with complex numbers, Gaussian elimination, Simpson's Rule, solution of simultaneous equations, and the Newton-Raphson Method.
The other group of programs are concerned with calculations in electricity and electronics. This group begins by solving a number of potentially useful basic electricity problems dealing with simple wiring, resistor configurations, and power transformers. These are followed by basic electronics programs that perform similar calculations. The remainder, and probably the real meat of the book, deals with electronic circuit design. Over fifty programs relate to the design of basic circuits, various types of active and passive filters, attenuator pads, and communications circuits. These programs may be especially useful to not only the hobbyist but also the professional electronics technician.
In each case, the author provides a listing of the program, a print-out from a typical run of the program, and a very brief explanation of the procedure involved. The background provided is adequate for someone already familiar with the technique but probably not for most novices. The abbreviated explanations, lack of exercises, and the absence of even a brief bibliography will significantly limit the use of the book as a text.
The programs themselves seem to be error-free and straight-forward. There is little error trapping, and mistakes usually cause an exit from the program. Since many of the programs are rather short, this doesn't constitute a serious liability. The book does offer an extensive library of potentially useful programs and so does seem to fulfill the author's stated purposes reasonably well.
The usefulness of this book will vary significantly from reader to reader. It could be valuable for someone doing electronics work, but it would probably have serious liabilities if used as a textbook; and many chemists may find that the majority of the programs are not related to their normal activities. Under the circumstances, no general recommendation is possible, but each reader must decide whether or not the book will satisfy ind{vidual needs.
*Department of Chemistry
SUNY-Oneonta, Oneonta, NY 13820
07/06/85 to 07/09/85