About Potto Project
Potto Project NFP is a 501 (c) (3) organization dedicated to build open content educational material that is intended to be used by the community and anyone who is interested. According the Alexa(.com) and http://website-tools.net/ over 73% of the entire world download books are using Potto's textbooks. Using the open content model we believe that a website such as this is important to the open content movement. In fact, this project started because of the idea of open content. On one side, big organizations, (such as the Hollywood companies), promote laws that intend to create the unthinkable: copyright [essentially] forever.
While the Founding Fathers of this country thought that the copyright should only be for a limited time, the courts and some legislators now think otherwise and indeed passed the ``right'' laws. This project is one reaction to this kind of thinking. While the driving force behind the ``copyright forever'' is economic (why we give copyright in the first place), it is immoral. If we can remove that force, the ``copyright forever'' push will be also dwindle down and perhaps will be eliminated.
In the last 5 years three textbooks have been constructed which are available for download. These books contain innovative ideas which make some chapters the best in the world. To be specific, consider that all the books on fluid mechanics provides definition of the bulk modulus. Only Potto Project book has explanation how to used it in hydrostatic cases. Another examples, the chapters on Fanno flow and Oblique shock contain many original idea such as the full analytical solution to the oblique shock, many algorithms for calculating Fanno flow parameters which are not found in any other book.
In addition, Potto has auxiliary materials such as the gas dynamics tables (the largest tables collection in the world), Gas Dynamics Calculator (Potto-GDC), etc.
It was found that the traditional books do not insert updated materials and prefer to rely on outdated and not accurate materials. For example, books in fluid mechanics are still using the Buckingham's theorem as their main base to teach and explain Dimensional Analysis instead of Nusselt's method. Hence, Potto Project gained a new mission which is to replace the old part of the curriculum dealing with dimensional analysis. Dr. Bar-Meir has developed new methodology and material explaining the dimensional analysis and shown why Buckingham theorem provides only a minimum number of dimensionless groups while the improved Nusselt method provides more complete set of parameters.
The combined number downloads of these books is over half a million (December 2009) or in a rate of 20,000 copies a month (to see more about the downloads estimate here). Potto books on compressible flow and fluid mechanics are used as the main textbook or as a reference book in several universities around the world. The books are used in more than 165 different countries around the world. Every month people from about 110 different countries download these books. The book on compressible flow is also used by ``young engineers and scientists'' in NASA according to Farassat, NASA Langley Research Center. Other Universities that used Potto Project books are
- Milwaukee School of Engineering
- Indian Institute of Technology Delhi
- The University of Iowa
- Queen's University, Canada
- Sheridan College, Oakville, Ontario, Canada
- Power & Water University of Technology (PWUT) in Islamic Republic of Iran
Please send us a note if your university using/used any of Potto Project books.
In addition, Potto's books are the preferred reference books for many professionals around the world.
It is not surprising that many graduate students are using Potto's books for their dissertation and other
advanced research projects.
For example, Rajat Suri from Massachusetts Institute of Technology used the Potto
Potto Project received the attention of numerous instructors from many different American universities according
to Prof. Jonathan Posner from Washington University in Seattle.
He claimed that some professors will not use the Potto Project books unless it is associated with American University.
Dr. Posner suggested that he and several of his colleagues will ``cooperate'' and ``managed' and/or
take over Potto Project.
They want to keep the name of Potto Project and the materials.
In Potto Project, we believe that the nature of open content books allows anyone to contribute and
to fork the book(s) provided sufficient credit is given.
A blog about experience creating open content textbook here.
The initiator of this project, Dr. Bar-Meir, is hopeful that others will joint his efforts to create many diverse textbooks for students and professors in college. While some might not agree with the reasoning behind the initiation of this web site, I hope you (the reader) will consider doing so.
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