Research Article | Published:

Sound and its Uses

Nature volume 127, pages 358359 (07 March 1931) | Download Citation



(1) IN reading acoustical literature, it is, at times, difficult to avoid an impression that the publication of Rayleigh's masterly treatise, “The Theory of Sound”, tended to exert a harmful influence on the subject as a whole. Thus, in the preface of the latest text-book on sound, we find its author writing: “The change which has taken place during the past ten or twenty years in the study of mechanical vibration and sound is my excuse for writing this book when such treatises as those of Rayleigh and Lamb already exist” Since a complete physical theory of a phenomenon is only obtained when mathematical and experimental work both yield the same quantitative results, the two treatises referred to should never be regarded as treatises on sound, but only as treatises on the theory of sound. The justification for Dr. Wood's book is not merely his description of the recent advances in sound, but rather his skill in giving equal importance to experiment and to theory.

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