Why an eBook instead of a printed book?
This book can be read on the screen of a PC, Mac and any desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone, i.e. any device capable of showing PDF documents (Adobe Acrobat v.6.0 or later). The PDf file is also formatted for impeccable printing on Letter, A4 or A5 (two pages in an A4 sheet) paper.
These are the benefits of having an eBook compared to a ready-printed volume:
- PRICE: less than 1/5th of the estimated price of a printed volume. (*)
- AVAILABILITY: an eBook is never out of print.
- SECURITY: the owner can make a backup copy, so that the eBook cannot be lost or stolen. Anyway, once the book has been obtained from Lulu.com, the file can be re-downloaded if needed.
- PRINTING: if a printed volume is really needed, the owner can print it from any home computer.
- MANY FIGURES: hundreds of figures, including many full-colour photos and charts.
- COLOUR: colour is freely used in the book's text and tables, helping to easily understand complex matters and relationships.
- PORTABILITY: the owner can carry the book around in a laptop computer, smartphone or any other portable device.
- KINDLE etc.: the text is fully readable. The PDF does not resize fonts: the user just zooms-in to see details or enlarge text. It is also possible to convert the PDF into a mobi (Kindle) file or some other format using one of the free utilities available online (such as Calibre).
- REFERENCE: the owner interested in a particular topic can use the PDF reader's search features and quickly find all the references to the topic in the eBook.
- TIMELINESS: you buy the eBook, download it immediately and can begin reading it straight away.
- WEB ADDRESSES: they allow easy access to the web pages referred to.(**)
(*) Accordingly, there are no plans to make this book available in printed form.
(**) On p. 14 of the 3rd edition, the 6th bullet reads: "HYPERLINKS. They are no longer included in this edition: most of them failed to work in the final PDF file, a common issue of the conversion of large files." Nevertheless, the final production process has reconverted all the http://... addresses into fully functional hyperlinks: clicking on a hyperlink in the ebook automatically opens the desired web page in the user's Internet browser.
Note: some older versions of Acrobat Reader display a initial error message "This file uses a new format that this version of Acrobat does not support. It may not open or display correctly". Nevertheless, this eBook has been tested in all Acrobat versions from 6.0 onwards (last 10 years) and it displays and prints flawlessly and identically in any of them.