A new edition of the New York Times bestseller—now a three-part Nova special: a fascinating and thought-provoking journey through the mysteries of space, time, and matter. Now with a new preface (not in any other edition) that will review the enormous public reception of the relatively obscure string theory—made possible by this book and an increased number of adherents amongst physicists—The Elegant Universe "sets a standard that will be hard to beat" (New York Times Book Review). Brian Greene, one of the world's leading string theorists, peels away the layers of mystery surrounding string theory to reveal a universe that consists of eleven dimensions, where the fabric of space tears and repairs itself, and all matter—from the smallest quarks to the most gargantuan supernovas—is generated by the vibrations of microscopically tiny loops of energy. Today physicists and mathematicians throughout the world are feverishly working on one of the most ambitious theories ever proposed: superstring theory. String theory, as it is often called, is the key to the Unified Field Theory that eluded Einstein for more than thirty years. Finally, the century-old antagonism between the large and the small-General Relativity and Quantum Theory-is resolved. String theory proclaims that all of the wondrous happenings in the universe, from the frantic dancing of subatomic quarks to the majestic swirling of heavenly galaxies, are reflections of one grand physical principle and manifestations of one single entity: microscopically tiny vibrating loops of energy, a billionth of a billionth the size of an atom. In this brilliantly articulated and refreshingly clear book, Greene relates the scientific story and the human struggle behind twentieth-century physics' search for a theory of everything. Through the masterful use of metaphor and analogy, The Elegant Universe makes some of the most sophisticated concepts ever contemplated viscerally accessible and thoroughly entertaining, bringing us closer than ever to understanding how the universe works.
Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory
Author: Brian Greene
Pubpsher: Random House
In a rare blend of scientific insight and writing as elegant as the theories it explains, Brian Greene, one of the world's leadin string theorists, peels away the layers of mystery surrounding string theory to reveal a universe that consists of 11 dimensions, where the fabric of space tears and repairs itself, and all matter - from the smallest quarks to the most gargantuan supernovas - is generated by the vibrations of microscopically tiny loops of energy. Green uses everything from an amusement park ride to ants on a hose to explain the beautiful yet bizarre realities that modern physics to both illuminate and entertain, this book is a tour de force of scientific writing - a delightful, lucid voyage through modern physics that brings us closer to understanding how the universe works.
A century of extraordinary physics, explained in three fabulously readable books. How did theory, experiment, personalities, politics, and chance combine in the development of Quantum theory, and the discovery of the Higgs Boson - the so-called God Particle?
Endorsements: "Nick Hawkes has written a book on science and Christian faith that is attractive, intelligent, and accessible to general readers. It shows clearly that Christian faith and science are not opposed to each other but in need of each other. This book will be of great interest not only to committed Christians seeking to see how their biblical faith relates to contemporary science, but also to all those searching for an authentic Christian spirituality for the twenty-first century." -Denis Edwards Flinders University "Nick Hawkes looks at arguments for and against the existence for God and comes to the conclusion that faith can no more dispense with science than science can dispense with God. Both complete one another. He knows the terrain well and is able to explain complex ideas in ordinary language. Dr. Hawkes concludes by saying that Christian theology, rather than undermining science, actually provides science with a solid ground of meaning on which to stand." -Mark Worthing Tabor College, Adelaide. "This book should have a prominent position on the shelves of pastors, church leaders, teachers, and anyone who is interested in proclaiming Christianity in our secular society. Dr. Hawkes uses modern science to put forward a reasoned defense of orthodox Christianity." -Ken Smith The University of Queensland Author Biography: Nick Hawkes has two degrees in science and two in theology. He is the author of a number of books including the BASICS discipling series and A Summary of the Bible. He was a research scientist for twelve years before training as a pastor and leading a number of vibrant churches.
A fully updated new edition of a critically acclaimed examinationof the theories and writings of Richard Dawkins by a world-renownedexpert on the relation of science and religion Includes in-depth analysis of Dawkins’ landmark treatiseThe God Delusion (2006), as well as coverage of his laterpopular works The Magic of Reality (2011) and TheGreatest Show on Earth (2011),and a new chapter on Dawkins as apopularizer of science Tackles Dawkins’ hostile and controversial views onreligion, and examine the religious implications of his scientificideas including a comprehensive investigation of the ‘selfishgene’ Written in an accessible and engaging style that will appeal toanyone interested in better understanding the interplay betweenscience and religion
This book follows the evolutionary trail all the way from the Big Bang 13.7 billion years ago to conscious life today. It is an accessible introductory book written for the interested layperson – anyone interested in the ‘big picture’ coming from modern science. It covers a wide range of topics including the origin and evolution of our universe, the nature and origin of life, the evolution of life including questions of birth and death, the evolution of cognition, the nature of consciousness, the possibility of extraterrestrial life and the future of the universe. The book is written in a narrative style, as these topics are all parts of a single story. It concludes with a discussion on the nature and future of science.
Will we ever discover a single scientific theory that tells us everything that has happened, and everything that will happen, on every level in the Universe? The quest for the theory of everything - a single key that unlocks all the secrets of the Universe - is no longer a pipe-dream, but the focus of some of our most exciting research about the structure of the cosmos. But what might such a theory look like? What would it mean? And how close are we to getting there? In New Theories of Everything, John D. Barrow describes the ideas and controversies surrounding the ultimate explanation. Updating his earlier work Theories of Everything with the very latest theories and predictions, he tells of the M-theory of superstrings and multiverses, of speculations about the world as a computer program, and of new ideas of computation and complexity. But this is not solely a book about modern ideas in physics - Barrow also considers and reflects on the philosophical and cultural consequences of those ideas, and their implications for our own existence in the world. Far from there being a single theory uniquely specifying the constants and forces of nature, the picture today is of a vast landscape of different logically possible laws and constants in many dimensions, of which our own world is but a shadow: a tiny facet of a higher dimensional reality. But this is not to say we should give up in bewilderment: Barrow shows how many rich and illuminating theories and questions arise, and what this may mean for our understanding of our own place in the cosmos.
The Rise of Complexity and Behavioral Versatility in Nature
Author: Raymond L. Neubauer
Pubpsher: Columbia University Press
Evolution and the Emergent Self is an eloquent and evocative new synthesis that explores how the human species emerged from the cosmic dust. Lucidly presenting ideas about the rise of complexity in our genetic, neuronal, ecological, and ultimately cosmological settings, the author takes readers on a provocative tour of modern science's quest to understand our place in nature and in our universe. Readers fascinated with "Big History" and drawn to examine big ideas will be challenged and enthralled by Raymond L. Neubauer's ambitious narrative. How did humans emerge from the cosmos and the pre-biotic Earth, and what mechanisms of biological, chemical, and physical sciences drove this increasingly complex process? Neubauer presents a view of nature that describes the rising complexity of life in terms of increasing information content, first in genes and then in brains. The evolution of the nervous system expanded the capacity of organisms to store information, making learning possible. In key chapters, the author portrays four species with high brain:body ratios—chimpanzees, elephants, ravens, and dolphins—showing how each species shares with humans the capacity for complex communication, elaborate social relationships, flexible behavior, tool use, and powers of abstraction. A large brain can have a hierarchical arrangement of circuits that facilitates higher levels of abstraction. Neubauer describes this constellation of qualities as an emergent self, arguing that self-awareness is nascent in several species besides humans and that potential human characteristics are embedded in the evolutionary process and have emerged repeatedly in a variety of lineages on our planet. He ultimately demonstrates that human culture is not a unique offshoot of a language-specialized primate, but an analogue of fundamental mechanisms that organisms have used since the beginning of life on Earth to gather and process information in order to buffer themselves from fluctuations in the environment. Neubauer also views these developments in a cosmic setting, detailing open thermodynamic systems that grow more complex as the energy flowing through them increases. Similar processes of increasing complexity can be found in the "self-organizing" structures of both living and nonliving forms. Recent evidence from astronomy indicates that planet formation may be nearly as frequent as star formation. Since life makes use of the elements commonly seeded into space by burning and expiring stars, it is reasonable to speculate that the evolution of life and intelligence that happened on our planet may be found across the universe.
What kind of a universe do we live in? Where do we fit into the galaxies? Does God explain it all? We live in a staggering cosmos which only we understand and appreciate. This book locates us in a cosmic story. We need to bring together science, the humanities, experience and self-awareness. The world revealed by modern science is a source of great wonder. Yet Darwinism makes belief in a loving god virtually impossible. And by our knowledge and appetites we are destroying our habitat by carbon emissions and global warming. Death is a fact of life, but, unless we take drastic action, human life itself will become barely possible. What can we do to save our grandchildren? How can we find happiness without god and without destroying our descendants? We have to learn how to live in a new way. We need to deepen our instincts for reciprocity and compassion. We can learn how to thrive in harsh circumstances with the help of the philosophy, theology and poetry of both East and West. Above all, we need to use our own judgment. We can find satisfaction through, for example, art and exploration without deflowering the earth. And by meditation we can develop an inner space of still delight.
Everything is connected... We''re living in the midst of a scientific revolution that''s captured the general public''s attention and imagination. The aim of this new revolution is to develop a "theory of everything"- -- a set of laws of physics that will explain all that can be explained, ranging from the tiniest subatomic particle to the universe as a whole. Here, readers will learn the ideas behind the theories, and their effects upon our world, our civilization, and ourselves.