
Re: Tensor Definition
Posted:
Jul 8, 2013 7:48 PM


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 MerriamWebster'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 wellknown dyadics (stress tensor, >permeability tensor, etc) having 9components 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 MW 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

