Secrets of the Old One: Einstein, 1905 / Edition 1

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Makes these ideas accessible to a general reader complex concepts of relativity and the stimulated emission of light through the use of mathematics no more difficult than one learns in high school.

Written by a noted and successful science writer.

Noted science writer Jeremy Bernstein tells the remarkable story of Einstein’s papers and their impact one century ago.

Explains the many technological ramifications of ideas which changed our lives in the twentieth century and continue to do so.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Secrets of the Old One is one of the best scientist-sketches and adds to Bernstein's long list of such successes.

Peter L. Gallison, American Scientist, Volume 94, Number 3, May-June 2006

Bernstein's book is wonderful and, as far as I can judge as a professional physicist, very pedagogical for non-specialists.

Andre Martin, CERN Courier, Volume 46, Number 3, 2006

Publishers Weekly
In just one year, 1905, Albert Einstein published four papers that transformed the field of physics and ushered in the modern world of science. Veteran science writer Bernstein (Oppenheimer: Portrait of an Enigma) examines each of these papers, attempting to explain their significance and provide a social and cultural context for them. Bernstein's task is a complex one given the nature of the physics involved, and his efforts come up short. On one hand, the book is peppered with mathematical formulas. Additionally, Bernstein provides minimal background in physics. making it unlikely that readers will be able to grasp either the import of the papers or their scientific context. On the other hand, while Bernstein does a better job of providing the social setting for Einstein's remarkable work, here, too, his minimalist approach leaves much to be desired. For example, Bernstein gives only the briefest discussion of Michele Besso, the sole person Einstein acknowledges in his paper on relativity. And Bernstein can natter on at length and irrelevantly about himself. Bernstein's title comes from Einstein's calling God "the Old One," but very few secrets are revealed in this short and frustrating volume. B&w illus. (Nov.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780387260051
  • Publisher: Springer New York
  • Publication date: 10/27/2005
  • Edition description: 2006
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 200
  • Sales rank: 1,209,459
  • Product dimensions: 9.21 (w) x 6.14 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Many readers will recognize Bernstein (Cranks, Quarks & the Cosmos, LJ 1/93) as the noted science essayist for the New Yorker for the past 30 years. He has also contributed essays to Scientific American and The Atlantic Monthly. He wrote A Theory for Everything (Copernicus, 1996) which collected some of these essays as well as Hitler's Uranium Club 2e (Copernicus, 1996).

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Table of Contents

Introduction.- The Pre-history.- Einstein's Theory of Relativity.- Do Atom's Exist?- The Quantam.- Epilogue.- Notes.

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