Schrodinger's Kittens and the Search for Reality: Solving the Quantum Mysteries

Overview

"Nobody understands quantum theory," said Richard Feynman, and in the 1980s that was true. Now John Gribbin presents exciting new evidence about the nature of light that pulls together quantum theory and relativity theory into a coherent explanation of reality - solving the quantum mysteries. John Gribbin's bestselling In Search of Schrodinger's Cat, heralded as "absolutely fascinating" by Isaac Asimov, was the first book to present the quantum's many riddles. Now he returns with Schrodinger's "kittens," the offspring of his famously ...
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1995 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. 261 p.

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Boston, MA 1995 Hard cover First edition. American ed. STATED 1ST ED. New in new dust jacket. BRIGHT SHINY BRAND NEW Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 261 p. Audience: ... General/trade. Read more Show Less

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Overview

"Nobody understands quantum theory," said Richard Feynman, and in the 1980s that was true. Now John Gribbin presents exciting new evidence about the nature of light that pulls together quantum theory and relativity theory into a coherent explanation of reality - solving the quantum mysteries. John Gribbin's bestselling In Search of Schrodinger's Cat, heralded as "absolutely fascinating" by Isaac Asimov, was the first book to present the quantum's many riddles. Now he returns with Schrodinger's "kittens," the offspring of his famously indeterminate cat. As a way of visualizing the many perplexing paradoxes of the new view of reality, Gribbin carries them to opposite ends of the universe, where their fate is determined by signals that travel faster than light and backwards in time. Elsewhere in the mysterious quantum world there are photons capable of being in two places at the same time. All this has much more than just theoretical interest. The practical applications are equally astounding. They provide for the serious possibility that quantum theory could eventually be used to develop a Star Trek-style teleportation machine, and how it has already found applications in uncrackable codes.

A decade ago, John Gribbin's bestseller In Search of Schrodinger's Cat explained the mysterious world of quantum mechanics. Now, in his new book, he shows how dramatic improvement in experimental technique and new theories have provided extraordinary new insights into how the quantum universe actually works. Line drawings.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Astrophysicist Gribbin takes readers on an exciting, lucid and mind-stretching tour of the puzzles and paradoxes of quantum physics. Since the publication of his 1984 bestseller In Search of Schrodinger's Cat, experiments have confirmed some of the bizarre phenomena of the subatomic world-a single atom that goes two ways at once and interferes with itself; pairs of particles linked across space and instantaneously ``communicating'' with one another; photons (particles of light) for which time stands still. Gribbin reviews IBM physicist Charles Bennett's 1993 proposal that quantum theory supports teleportation of objects through space and Oxford physicist David Deutsch's recent outline of an experiment designed to tell us whether multiple universes exist. He endorses a ``transactional interpretation'' of quantum mechanics based on the notion that quantum waves can travel backwards through time. A gifted popularizer, Gribbin uses thought-experiments and diagrams to make difficult ideas accessible without oversimplifying. (May)
Library Journal
In In Search of Schrdinger's Cat (LJ 7/84), veteran science writer Gribbin considered a famous paradox in quantum mechanics: that subatomic particles are not really particles until someone observes them. His new book explains recent experimental and theoretical findings about the strange nature of the submicroscopic world of the atom. The "Copenhagen interpretation" of quantum mechanics offered by Niels Bohr and his colleagues has prevailed for almost 70 years, but there is now a plethora of competing interpretations. Gribbin reviews this active and controversial field and cautiously indicates his personal preference for one of the new theoretical models. It is fascinating to see how a problem long regarded as "settled" has acquired new layers of mystery. For larger science collections-Jack W. Weigel, Univ. of Michigan Lib., Ann Arbor
Booknews
Gribbon (In Search of Shrodinger's Cats) presents new evidence about the nature of light that pulls together quantum theory and relativity theory into a coherent explanation of reality. Scattering the indeterminate feline's brood to the opposite ends of the universe (all good homes, of course) he explains signals that travel faster than light and backwards in time, photons capable of being in two places at the same time; and how such arcanery is already being used to make uncrackable codes and could result in a transporter a la Star Trek. For general readers with some general knowledge of science. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Gilbert Taylor
Gribbin earned physics-writing eminence with "In Search of Schrodinger's Cat" (1984), a popular must-have for libraries that describes the quantum universe of felines and all other matter. In this sequel, he addresses certain dents inflicted by current researchers on the so-called Copenhagen Interpretation of the behavior of electrons and photons that is associated with Bohr, Heisenberg, and others, physicists who capped the quantum theory with wave-particle duality, uncertainty, and nonlocality. The denters are experimenters who have, for example, disproven some "established" facts, such as the axiom that a quantum energy packet may be a wave or particle but not both. It can be both, apparently. Feynman's seminal contributions, particularly his sum-over-histories explanation for the apparition of light traveling in a single line, have also been further refined. As usual in his intriguing books, Gribbin speculates on sf-style implications, among them using quanta as an unbreakable code or for a teletransporter a la "Star Trek". In the true quantum realm, Gribbin remains the premier expositor of the latest developments.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316328388
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 5/1/1995
  • Edition description: 1st American ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 261
  • Product dimensions: 6.44 (w) x 9.58 (h) x 1.02 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Cat Was Found - Where Is the Rest of The Book?

    I found this book to be written well, easy to read, but hard to get into. Figuring out where the book is taking you, besides a description of relativity and quantum behaviors, was hard. I found the over all book to be interesting, if you were to not know anything about relativity, but having studied it . well I would have thought that a bit of humor or something was in order. Great for the non-physicist out there.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2003

    Gribbin makes it obscure

    Gribbin seems better at outlining technical detail than he is at articulating what it means. Often, after a technical tour de force he jumps to conclusions not inherent in his explanation. At other times he gets lost in long technical exposition. Surely there are more able writers on the subject.

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