Spending large sums of money for textbooks for EE is a scam because classical EE is an old discipline and it could be taught perfectly using mostly booke now out of copyright from old age or from government free use texts like Navy rate training manuals.
They pay professors enough, they should be prohibited from writing textbooks and then making them mandatory.
Bret, hate to tell you this but the US Navy has never pplublished an EE text. They have some great technicians texts, but that's about all.
You're correct that EE textbooks are far to overpriced and often uneeded new versions are introduced, but that's simply a way to keep them up to date. While the basic theory hasn't changed in over 100 years, new applications have, and the profs try to keep their students updated on new developments.
Would you want to fork over a tuition payment of now over $20K per year to any university that didn't?
NAVPERS manuals are simply great (for technicians):
No reason why engineering students cannot use them ... but they are somewhat lacking in theory and math.
I taught EET at universities for 33 years and chose to write textbooks and consult to be able to feed a family of four and live in a decent home and drive a decent car and afford dental care (not provided by my employer) and send my kids to college. Point of view is everything! My book royalties and consulting income exceeded my salary for 15 of those years.
I absolutely agree about the mandatory part! That sucks and should not be allowed.
I notice that some universities put material on the web (sometimes a least as comprehensive as the average text). That way, it can b updated whenever the need arises. I was a secondhand book dealer fo many years & you can tell that most books were very lightly read The vast majority of texts are completely unnecessary, & the stuf that changes from year to year could easily be coveredby a few we references today As for 'timeless' stuff like calculus.. each year the books ar fatter, more colorful, and more dumbed down, on the average I'm not sure where the pressure for "me too" average texts comes from probably more ego than greed When it comes to a basic practical analog text, Horowitz & Hil "The Art of Electronics" will do me fine. I can fill the gaps fro the web, no problem
Well, as an author of the fine book you mention above, I can tell you that both Paul and I have massive personal electronics-book libraries, that we rely on frequently, and that we're constantly seeking to expand our holdings. The web simply doesn't hack it. But I agree textbook prices over $100 is crazy. The addition of CDs of dubious value, accompanied by $180+ prices, is an outrage.
And its worse outside the USA - especially if you dont have parity value on currency. Even ARRL handbooks are expensive - try $123.95 Aus for "Experimental Methods in RF Design".... - its a nice way of keeping the technologically advanced countries at the top of the heap - make sure that books, magazines etc are too expensive for students to buy.... my local library long ago dropped its subscription to QST, Radcom, etc due to cost - and thats at the hobby level! - student friends at university report the same in the professional(sp) areas.
And, sorry Win, but for those of us who DONT have the wherewithal to buy the books we want, sometimes the net is the ONLY source of information available. And yes, the AOE is the sort of textbook I wish I had found 20 years ago - one volume, more use than the rest of the bookshelf! (am saving up for my OWN copy)