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What is the true nature of space and time? These concepts are at the heart of science, but they remain deeply wrapped in mystery. Both house their structure at the smallest pre-subatomic and the largest cosmological levels continues to defy modern physics and may require revolutionary new ideas for which science is still grasping. This unique volume brings together world leaders in cosmology, particle physics, quantum gravity, mathematics, philosophy and theology, to provide fresh insights into the deep structure of space and time. Andrew Taylor, Shahn Majid, Roger Penrose, Alain Connes, Michael Heller, and John Polkinghorne all experts in their respective fields, explain their theories in this outstanding compiled text.
Preface; 1. The dark universe A. N. Taylor; 2. Quantum spacetime and physical reality S. Majid; 3. Causality, quantum theory and cosmology R. Penrose; 4. On the fine structure of spacetime A. Connes; 5. Where physics meets metaphysics M. Heller; 6. The nature of time J. C. Polkinghorne; Index.
Posted March 15, 2009
This is not a book written by one author's biased views on such delicate topics. Instead, this is a collection of different scientific views on various subjects regarding the nature of reality. The topics discussed, the universe and its mysteries, the quantum theory, the structure of space and time, and the uncertainty principle, are each explained individually by separate people, but they are built off of the previous topic. Some brief history is stated on past discoveries such as the Universe's constant expansion discovered in 1920 by Vesto Slipher. After the brief history lesson, the book digs deep into our knowledge of the universe and what it is hiding. All of the universe we see is from the past, and modern physics is helping us use clues to discover the orientation of the universe. Quantum space time follows up the dark universe and it takes a more theoretical approach to the mysteries of trying to put gravity and electromagnetism together into one unified equation. The trouble is that every attempt at putting the two together fails due to laws in reality that don't apply at the quantum level. This difference between the quantum level and much larger scale activities is what is stumping scientists today. A repeatedly stated problem for this dilemma is that all of our past knowledge is past on assumptions and tests that we believe are true , but even after all the tests preformed, may be leading us down the wrong road to the nature of reality. Theories made hundreds of years ago were shunned by most of the world, but we now believe them to be true today. Most of those theories have been proven now, but the theories of today cannot be proven or dis-proven because we lack the technology and comprehension of things that appear to be insignificant in every day life. I liked this book because of my intrigue with the mysteries of the vast universe. I am fascinated by how much there is left to discover in the enormous universe and what secrets lie below the subatomic level. The book really makes you think about how complex things can be. The mathematical equations expressed were difficult to understand at points, but the overall of what was being explained was easy to comprehend. I recommend this book to those who really want think hard about the wonders of the universe because it almost takes you away from reality to explain it to you. Overall this is a good book for deeper understanding of modern physics achievements and theories. I think this book is worth reading just to learn more about the nature of physics.
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