This book is simply EXCELLENT.
Its goal, namely, to convey quaternion algebra to people not necessarily mathematicians, is really fulfilled.
A variety of readers should benefit from this work.
And, hopefully, quaternions will soon become part of conventional mathematics education,
as well as part of every branch of Science - including, for instance, biology and medicine.
Dr. Kuipers' "Quaternions and Rotation Sequences" is a fundamental step in this direction.
It presents, elegantly and authoritatively, this unequaled, powerful algebraic system, initially proposed by Sir William R. Hamilton in 1843.
It is surprising just how long Hamilton's Quaternions have been forgotten...
This book is hence a BREAKTHROUGH, not only in mathematics, but in all Science.
If you've never heard about "quaternions" before, yet science and its achievements are of interest to you,
don't hesitate to dig more on this topic, and this book is sure one of the first steps!
And if you did hear about quaternions, maybe you have heard that vectorial algebra was equivalent and more tractable...
That's NOT TRUE. Quaternions are far more superior than vector algebra, and this book shows us why.
I first heard about quaternions just a couple of years ago, through Wikipedia, by accident, while searching "gyroscopes"...
It struck me a lot to read that there are numbers with 4 dimensions; with 4 inherent dimensions!!!
Immediately, I knew this had to be an UTTERLY IMPORTANT scientific field.
Yet, what surprised me most was that I had never heard about it, ever. How could this be?
Not any of my math teachers,
neither any of the mathematics nor philosophy of science books that I've read, or that I happened to look a while,
none have never even mentioned its existence!!!
That puzzled me for a while, and I thought that maybe quaternion algebra might be extremely difficult for mathematicians and non-mathematicians alike.
Fortunately, Dr. Kuipers' book proved me I was wrong: Quaternions are just as accessible as any other conventional mathematics.
Eventually, it is even easier, were it presented to us early, as part as our ordinary mathematical education in schools.
So, now, this is one of MY MOST CHERISHED BOOKS, and it figures as one of those few turning-point books that I have read,
delimitating a "before-and-after" in my personal history.
(By the way, my other turning-point book,s are:
"À la Recherche du Temps Perdu [In Search of Lost Time]", by Proust,
"The Structure of Scientific Revolutions", by Thomas Khun;
"Darwinism Evolving: Systems Dynamics and the Genealogy of Natural Selection
", by David Depew and Bruce Weber;
"L'Évolution Créatrice" (Creative Evolution
), by Henry Bergson;
"Critique of Pure Reason", by Kant; and
"Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind
" by Evan Thompson).
Unquestionably, it is scientific masterpiece.