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Topic: Tensor Definition
Replies: 16   Last Post: Jul 16, 2013 8:48 PM

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Mike Trainor

Posts: 28
Registered: 4/21/13
Re: Tensor Definition
Posted: Jul 8, 2013 7:48 PM
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On Mon, 08 Jul 2013 09:07:50 -0400, "J.B. Wood"
<john.wood@nrl.navy.mil> wrote:

>Hello, all. Just when I think I've got a good handle on tensors (after
>painstakingly reading and working problems in Louis Brand's "Vector and
>Tensor Analysis"), I come across the following in Merriam-Webster's
>Collegiate Dictionary:
>
>"A generalized vector with more than three components each of which is a
>function of an arbitrary point in space of an appropriate number of
>dimensions"
>
>That definition seems to exclude well-known dyadics (stress tensor,
>permeability tensor, etc) having 9-components that are constants (for
>the material involved.) That aside, I'm still having a problem grasping
>the foregoing definition. Thanks for your time and any comment. Sincerely,


The M-W definition is pretty meanigless, IMHO. I think it was put
there by someone who does not understand it.

While there are many ways that people may look at tensors,
I am partial to the one that defines vectors (which are really
rank 1 tensors!) and tensors in terms of their transformation
properties.

Another fallacy that I have come acorss is "a tensor is nothing
but a matix".

mt



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