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My Favorite Textbooks

I find most textbooks to be basically unreadable. Worse still, when I google “best X textbook”, I frequently land on a “classic” textbook that feels like it was written by a fucking reptiloid for people with an entirely different from mine intelligence architecture. I hate formalism. I hate long mechanical derivations. I love thinking in pictures. I love intuitive, explainlikeim5 explanations. I believe that examples should precede definitions, not follow them. Finally, I have big troubles with working memory, which might explain most of the preceding stuff.

Thus, a list of my favorite textbooks/educational materials; all of them are either free or available on libgen.

List so far: linear algebra, calculus, multivariable calculus, topology, computation theory, microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometrics.

(if you feel that your learning style is similar to mine, do share your own favorite texts/materials not on this list!)

Linear algebra

Lecture notes by Vipul Naik. Note: these notes are targeted at social science majors; all Vipul’s course materials, including quizzes and answers to them are here.

Calculus

Calculus by Michael Spivak. Note: you absolutely need somebody to guide you/help with the problems from the book. The Correct™ way to self-study books like this is to email a professor at a local college and ask them if they could help you with stuff you don’t understand and problems (hint: they will be happy to help).

Multivariable calculus

Matec Notes by Alexey Guzey. Note: once I was so angry at the course’s main textbook that I wrote my own set of lecture notes for it; naturally, it has an econ taste to it.

Lecture notes by Vipul Naik. Note: these notes are targeted at social science majors; all Vipul’s course materials, including quizzes and answers to them are here.

Topology

Topology Without Tears by Sidney A. Morris.

Algorithms

Algorithms by Tim Roughgarden. Note: this is a MOOC, not a textbook. But too good not to be included

Computation Theory

Introduction to the Theory of Computation by Michael Sipser. Note: this book was the basis for the Algorithms-2 course I took at the university.

Microeconomics

Intermediate Microeconomics: A Modern Approach by Hal Varian.

Macroeconomics

Macroeconomics by Olivier Blanchard.

Econometrics

Introduction to Econometrics by Christopher Dougherty. Note: lmk if you need solutions for it.


Feel free to share your thoughts on this post with me!