Books I like, with my ratings (5 stars is the highest). Please add your thoughts and ratings in the comments:
All About Circuits: Volume I – DC, Tony R. Kuphaldt, www.allaboutcircuits.com
Free online book about electronic circuits.
Getting Started in Electronics, Forrest M. Mims III, ISBN 0-945053-28-2
One of the all time favorite “Getting Started” books. Most of my students agree.
Forrest M. Mims Engineer’s Mini Notebooks
The best way to learn electronics is to build things, and the Forrest Mims mini-notebook series have been a favorite for generations. Each project is fun and incredibly simple, and each volume has many dozens of projects. Volume I is probably my all time favorite. A number of other Forrest M. Mims III notebooks and scrapbooks exist, and all are great for browsing and inspiration, with some overlap
Volume I: Timer, Op Amp, and Optoelectronic Circuits & Projects, Forrest M. Mims III
Volume II: Science and Communication Circuits & Projects, Forrest M. Mims III
Volume III: Electronic Sensor Circuits & Projects, Forrest M. Mims III
Volume IV: Electronic Formulas, Symbols & Circuits, Forrest M. Mims III
The Forrest Mims Engineer’s Notedbook
The Forrest Mims Circuit Scrapbook, Volumes I and II
Handmade Electronic Music: The Art of Hardware Hacking by Nicolas Collins
Another great introduction to electronics from the point of view of circuit bending, of modifying circuits to do something they weren’t designed for by experimentation. Irresistible, and very entertaining reading.
There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings (Clearwater Publishing) by Kenn Amdahl ISBN-10: 0962781592 ISBN-13: 978-0962781599
For many years I avoided this book because I thought it was a gimmick, but every time the question of “What book is best to learn electronics” comes up in my circle of friends, this is one of the top 3, so I finally read it and guess what, it’s incredible. If all the other books that claim to be non-technical fail for you, try this one. Or get this first.
Practical Electronic for Inventors (McGraw-Hill) by Paul Scherz, ISBN 0-07-058078-2
Excellent book that covers a huge range of electronics, from low level theory to high level practical circuits. Excellent explanations and very clear drawings. I plan to use this as my textbook for my intermediate classes next quarter.
Make: Electronics (O’Reilly) by Charles Platt, ISBN 978-0-596-15374-8
Really excellent introduction to electronics with extremely detailed diagrams and pictures. Project based, strongly encourages learning by doing. Anyone frustrated with having to read theory before they get to have fun should get this book. Anyone who has been discouraged by the other so-called “Electronics for Beginners” book should give this book a chance – it really is unlike the others.
The Art of Electronics (Cambridge University Press), by Paul Horowitz and Winfield Hill, ISBN 0-521-37095-7
Although a little intimidating for beginners, this is in fact an excellent text for the beginner who wants to understand electronics a little more deeply. Mine is full of placeholders, and although it is over 1000 pages I always have it with me. No library or teacher should be without this.
The Elements of Style (Longman, 4th edition), by William Strunk, Jr. and E. B. White, ISBN-10: 020530902X, ISBN-13: 978-0205309023
Writing clearly is important in all fields, but perhaps more so in the technical fields, where your point must be made clearly and unambiguously. I have found the simple guidelines in this slim book to be invaluable in shaping my writing.