Customer Reviews for

The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space, Time, and the Texture of Reality

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 73 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2007

    Fascinating space travel

    If you are interested in a book that discusses the universe than this is a good title to pick up and read. After reading Brian Greene, I have come to the realization that space is more vast than I ever imagined. The universe is a place that is so big and so expansive that after this book one is able to understand more completely how the universe works. Greene also mentions string theory. String theory is one of the latest theories that unify the macroscopic and the microscopic worlds of physics.

    5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2006

    Excellent introduction to theoretical physics

    We highly recommend this excellent introduction to theoretical physics, which is accessible to any determined reader, even those with no mathematical and little scientific background. Pulitzer Prize-winning author Brian Greene is scrupulous about clarity, and has a gift for metaphor that makes it possible for him to discuss even the most abstruse, esoteric physics with skill, clarity and wit. Readers will discover baffling wonders that flatly contradict ordinary quotidian experience, and will come to realize that what they perceive as real is anything but real. Moreover, they will learn that physicists seem to have a great deal more success at demonstrating what is not real than at discovering what is. The most commonplace things - the difference between yesterday and tomorrow, between here and there - continue to baffle the greatest minds in science. Now you can begin to understand why.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2011

    Excellent book and topic.

    Brian Greene is a great science mind and writer. If you are interested in the basic nature of our universe, this is a must read.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2011

    Highly Recommended...engages brain cells

    I first became aware of this title watching Nova on PBS. I was enthralled to say the least...had to get the book and was not disappointed. Mr. Greene is very engaging and presents the material in an intelligent as well as entertaining way. NO MATH. I must admit that I had to work a bit on some of the material especially the quantum part but that is what I found so engaging.I am into my second reading and have also embarked on a journey to learn physics and even honing up on my algebra. Being retired I have the time. All of this in somewhat new to me and I come into it with no or little presuppositions. I just purchased the DVD of the title and I will most definitely buy his other books...can't wait.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2005

    It has changed my thinking

    Frankly speaking, my greatest interest was not in physics. But after reading Brian Greene, I am seriously planning to graduate in physics. This book has opened my mind to the wonders of quantum mechanics and I am really thankful for it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2004

    Describes a universe stranger than our wildest dreams

    In the first sentence of chap. 16 (the last chapter of Brian Greene's The Fabric of the Universe), the author srites, 'Physicists spend a large part of their lives in a state of confusion.' If such a sobering, and humorous, assessment is made of seasoned professionals, little wonder that laypersons untrained in physics and mathematics develop an Excedrin headache trying to grasp the mind-boggling theories of modern science. What is space? What is time? What is matter? What is energy? What is gravity? What is reality? In our mundane, commonsense thinking, the answers are self-evident and patently clear. The truth, however, says Greene, is otherwise. Many, if not most, of the findings of modern physics are counterintuitive; they reveal a cosmos far stranger than imagined in our wildest dreams. Greene, the author of The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory (Revised Edition, 2003), has now published a second popular work on physics in which he delves into the mysteries of space and time, or (since Einstein) spacetime. From Sir Isaac Newton's classical physics, to Albert Einstein's theories of special and general relativity, to the weird world of quantum mechanics and superstring theory, Greene is our tour guide into the macrocosmos (the world of the very large) and the microcosmos (the world of the very small). Here we encounter an ugly skeleton rattling around in the physicists' closet: 'The greatest obstacle theoretical physics has faced during the last eighty years [is the] fundamental rift between general relativity and quantum mechanics.' When the mathematical calculations of each are juxtaposed, things just don't add up. Until some grand unifying field theory is found, the two greatest theories of modern physics stand in embarrassing contradiction. Following the lead of Edward Witten, the world's most renowned string theorist, Greene believes that superstring theory is the key to such a unified field theory. Superstrings (if they exist) are conceived to be incredibly tiny loops of vibrating energy that lie deep within the heart of matter and that are able to connect with and influence, from incredible distances, objects widely separated in spacetime. M-theory, a refinement of superstring theory, envisions the existence of eleven dimensions (ten of space and one of time). In such a bizarre (and, for this reviewer, incomprehensible) cosmos, the arrow of time, which seemingly moves only in one direction (from the past to the present and on to the future), could be reversed time machines might be possible. Pass the Excedrin, please! Greene writes brilliantly about symmetry, the second law of thermodynamics (entropy), gravity, multiverses (parallel universes), the evolution and expansion of the universe, black holes, and the influence of the big bang on the arrow of time. Disappointingly, however, he says little (except implicitly) about causality, except in a footnote to chap. 3. Greene scatters nuggets of wit, wisdom, and humor through his intelligent text, and provides numerous analogies and metaphors ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous--from Nicole Kidman and Zen koans to Voodoo and the Scarecrow in the Land of Oz. Numerous drawings and line illustrations enhance the book's popular appeal. If you want to be ambitious, read the 42 pages of technical notes at the end of the volume. Caution: More than one Excedrin tablet is needed for such a venture. So what? you may ask. What does all this scientific stuff have to do with the price of tea in China? If nothing else, we gain from Greene's book a fascinating chronicle of our evolving understanding of the basic 'stuff' of the universe. For, as the philosopher Aristotle wrote, in the first sentence of his Metaphysics, 'All men by nature desire to know.' Roy E. Perry is an advertising copywriter at a Nashville publishing house. He may be reached at rperry1778@aol.com ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2007

    In awe of the Universe...

    This is an excellent book for the novice reader interested in physics. The examples given by the author puts something complex into layman's terms. I couldn't but it down. I have read other physics books but this one was by far the most mind expanding. The things that are at play beyond our world and within our world down to the minute details are really astounding. If you suffer from neuroticism and/or can't come to terms with you being nothing more than just a bunch of atoms then don't read. You will just get your feeling hurt.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2005

    interesting read

    I found this book to be very interesting. The author was very concise and stuck to the subject matter. His description of Newton's bucket experiment as to how the water in a bucket is affected by the rotation of the bucket was very insightful. I was so amazed by this book, I bought his first one and am reading it now (the elegant universe). I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in how the world works.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2004

    Great book -- no-so-great CD

    After listening to the first two chapters on CD, I bought the book. Eric Davies, the reader, put emphasis on the wrong words so often (he reads the book like it is a suspense novel) that his reading interfered with learning. Too bad Brian Greene didn't read it himself.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2004

    Very nice

    I havent actually read this book yet, however it has risen considerably on my to-do list. I first heard of it while Greene was explaining his theories in Denver at the 'Tattered Cover Book Store.' I chanced upon while visiting C-Span for the first time in my life. Expecting a boring speech on something I couldn't understand, I was gripped and blown away at the same time when I heard his compelling use of language and hilarious analogies including one which metioned 'a wardrobe malfunction.' I have always been more of a biology person, but his speech alone has made me seriously reconsider my major, and University (Greene teaches at Columbia.)I can't wait to see and hear more of Greene in the future, and someday i hope he will give an interview fort the Daily Show, it's right up his alley.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2004

    Simply the best for a average reader

    Perhaps the best book you can hope for this topic (in case you are not a physics graduate.). Very simple and interesting style of explaining.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 22, 2014

    This is his second book. I finished this book around the same ti

    This is his second book. I finished this book around the same time I was watching the new Cosmos series on Fox. (It's hard to believe that Seth McFarlane, the man behind Family Guy, is one of the producers of the new Cosmos. I'm still waiting for Stewie to show up, or for a Cosmos parody on Family Guy. But I digress.) Like Carl Sagan and Neil Degrasse Tyson on Cosmos, Brian Greene is attempting to make science understandable to those of us who don't have advanced science degrees. Dr Greene uses a lot of pop culture references to illustrate his points. He seems to have a special fondness for the Simpsons. It's a little more complex, though. He's trying to explain the basics of string theory, with its theories of 10-dimensional space and quantum lengths. It can be a little slow going at times. He saves most of the mathematical equations for the footnotes. I'm not sure it's fully understandable to everyone. I had trouble with it myself. Some updates from the text. The large Hadron collider was finished, and the Higgs particle was discovered. Also, scientists recently discovered ripples from the original big bang. Dr Greene knows about pop culture. (He's appeared on the TV show The Big Bang Theory making fun of himself.) He does well in this book. It's just the subject matter that can be daunting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2014

    Highly recommend this book for anyone interested in Physics

    The book is extremely well written and easily followed by anyone with even a slight bit of knowledge of Physics. Guaranteed you will come a way with a new appreciation for the stuff around you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2013

    Reality is more bizarre than fiction

    A wonderful book for those novices interested in delving into the bizarre yet beautiful fabric of the universe. Written for non scientists in an accessible fashion. Mind bending concepts challenge our sense of reason. Very enjoyable.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2012

    Bn make this a daily find!

    If you like this book read the trouble with physics

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  • Posted April 17, 2012

    For me, the best book of Brian Greene's trilogy. Very well writt

    For me, the best book of Brian Greene's trilogy. Very well written, exciting, and extremely interesting. If you haven't read it, what are you waiting for?

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  • Posted April 12, 2012

    A truly engrossing book for adults who desire to understand the

    A truly engrossing book for adults who desire to understand the current directions in cosmology, quantum mechanics and particle physics. The book is well written and free of the clash of personalities that mark so many of the current popular books on these subjects. I will gladly go on to read further works from this author. He writes with grace and clarity on subjects that are becoming increasingly more important for our futures. Without an understanding of where we came from and what we are a part of, we will not treat the world-or each other-with the respect and attention that we should.

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  • Posted September 21, 2011

    Good read, but too, too, too, too, too wordy.

    Leave out half the goofy little tales and examples he's added and stick with more straight science and it would be an excellent read. The good science is there, but I kept falling asleep trying to get to it.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2004

    An stimulating book

    An exciting read in the currently prevailing understanding of the universe, supported with good illustrations. Highly recommended to general readers and students.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 29, 2004

    A very good book about aging science

    The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene expands the scope of his best selling Elegant Universe to even wider readership. The foundations of relativity and quantum theory were laid well before the appearance of spacecraft explorations, computers and the chaos theory. It is very unlikely that we can understand the texture of reality by adding extra dimensions to the old framework. For a much fresher look on the fabric of reality that elucidates puzzling observations, like normal galaxies and heavy elements at the fringes of the accessible universe, I recommend to pop-science and sci-fi readers Eugene Savov's book Theory of Interaction the Simplest Explanation of Everything. Savov simply demonstrates how the revealed vibrating underlying structure creates what we observe and then described in the laws of modern physics. If you will enjoy exploring some entertaining ideas that may become obsolete in few decades due to their complexity, then you should buy Brian Greene's The Fabric of the Cosmos. If you are looking for a simpler and much far reaching picture of the fabric of existence, inferred from space observations and trained in fractals intuition, then buy Eugene Savov's Theory of Interaction the Simplest Explanation of Everything together with Discovery of Cosmic Fractals by Yurij Baryshev and Pekka Teerikorpi. You may add these three books to your collection of basic books. The controversial books will free your mind.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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