Now, two physicists seek to remedy this situation by both drawing on their scientific expertise and their talent for communicating science to the general reader. Read more...
Now, two physicists seek to remedy this situation by both drawing on their scientific expertise and their talent for communicating science to the general reader. In this lucid, informative book, designed for the curious, they make the seemingly daunting subject of quantum physics accessible, appealing, and exciting.
Their story is partly historical, covering the many "Eureka" moments when great scientists--Max Planck, Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrodinger, and others--struggled to come to grips with the bizarre realities that quantum research revealed. Although their findings were indisputably proven in experiments, they were so strange and counterintuitive that Einstein refused to accept quantum theory, despite its great success.
The authors explain the many strange and even eerie aspects of quantum reality at the subatomic level, from "particles" that can be many places simultaneously and sometimes act more like waves, to the effect that a human can have on their movements by just observing them Finally, the authors delve into quantum physics' latest and perhaps most breathtaking offshoots--field theory and string theory. The intricacies and ramifications of these two theories will give the reader much to ponder.
In addition, the authors describe the diverse applications of quantum theory in its almost countless forms of modern technology throughout the world. Using eloquent analogies and illustrative examples, this book renders even the most profound reaches of quantum theory understandable and something for us all to savor.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2011-02-07
- Reviewer: Staff
In their second work (after Symmetry and the Beautiful Universe), co-authors Lederman, the Nobel Prize winning director emeritus of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and present director Hill treat nature as a language to be learned, taking readers on a journey from the large to the small, "to a world within our world" and giving them a primer in the language of modern science. Star Trek, Galileo, and Newton and kick things off, and the authors address competing theories of light. Is it a wave transmitted through the ether, or a beam of photons? What could be ancient history comes to vibrant life in an engaging narrative that reveals contradictory experiments that found light to be both a wave and a particle—simultaneously. This led to further anomalies, as Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrödinger, in experiments to determine the precise location and time of an event, challenged the fundamental idea of classical physics and opened the door to probability theory. The authors give the reader a peek into the wonders of modern physics—from early "Eureka" moments to field theory and string theory—in a highly accessible introduction to third millennium science. (Jan.)