It is needless to reemphasize the significance and importance of the subject of dynamics of structures when the architects and engineers are constantly craving for lightweight but strong materials, and lean and slim structures. Among the whole family of the subjects on Structural Engineering, this is indeed the most mathematical and, therefore, most scary. There are an umpteen number of textbooks available on the subject of Dynamics of Structures that discuss the derivation of equations along with their physical significance. Nevertheless, it is very difficult to visualize these equations.

FORTRAN has been the most powerful and preferred programming language of structural engineers, but it was without graphic commands. The subjects of structural dynamics, stiffness matrix method, nonlinear behaviour of members and structures, FORTRAN language, and computer hardware and software have evolved together since early 1960s. There used to be special Tektronix and vt100 graphic terminals, and Calcomp plotters with proprietary graphics software. The biggest hurdle in understanding the subject of dynamics remained the inability of easy graphical representation of equations and dynamic response of structures.
Remember SAP IV, DRAIN-2D and SAKE developed in early 1970s? With the beginning of the twentyfirst century, all that has changed. The desktop and laptop computers, and colour laser printers with very high resolutions are easily available and affordable. MATLAB is a very powerful and user-friendly software for carrying out solution of extremely complicated mathematical equations with built-in graphic functions. Another very easy and powerful tool is the electronic worksheet such as MS-EXCEL.

The writing of this book was inspired by the following objectives:
• to present the subject matter with utmost ease,
• to provide necessary and detailed mathematical background,
• to introduce more illustrative examples,
• to present the subject matter useful to final year undergraduate and postgraduate students,
• to introduce MS-EXCEL and MATLAB,
• to introduce nonlinear modelling and analysis,
• to introduce special damping devices and their modelling, and
• to introduce practical applications useful to practicing engineers.

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