The Biggest Ideas in the Universe 1
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
‘Sean Carroll has achieved something I thought impossible: a bridge between popular science and the mathematical universe of working physicists. Magnificent!’
Brian Clegg, author of Ten Days in Physics that Shook the World
Immense, strange and infinite, the world of modern physics often feels impenetrable to the undiscerning eye – a jumble of muons, gluons and quarks, impossible to explain without several degrees and a research position at CERN.
But it doesn’t have to be this way!
Allow world-renowned theoretical physicist and bestselling author Sean Carroll to guide you through the biggest ideas in the universe. Elegant and simple, Carroll unravels this web of theories and formulae equation by equation, getting to the heart of the truths they represent.
In Space, Time and Motion, the first book of this landmark trilogy, Carroll delves into the core of classical physics. From Euclid to Einstein, Space, Time and Motion explores the ideas which revolutionised science and forever changed our understanding of our place in the cosmos.
'Neat, and extremely simple: only a deep thinker such as Sean Carroll could introduce the complexity of Einstein's general relativity in such a luminous and straightforward manner.' -- Carlo Rovelli, author of Seven Brief Lessons on Physics 'Sean Carroll has achieved something I thought impossible: a bridge between popular science and the mathematical universe of working physicists. Magnificent!' -- Brian Clegg, author of Ten Days in Physics that Shook the World 'What is most appealing in this ambitious book is its combination of technical accuracy and lightness of tone...reader-friendly... the scientific and mathematical aspects of the book are impeccable.' -- Wall Street Journal 'Reading The Biggest Ideas in the Universe is like taking an introductory physics class with a star professor - but with all of the heady lectures and none of the tedious problem sets... For those without the [STEM] background, [the result] might feel like a porthole into another world.' -- Scientific American 'Do popular books about physics leave you feeling that you're just getting stories and not real science? If so, this is the book for you. In a clear and non-scary way, it explains the mathematical theories behind what physicists really think. Carroll's trilogy will plug a big gap in how physics is communicated to non-specialists - and to judge from this first volume, will do so brilliantly.' -- Philip Ball, author of Beyond Weird: Why Everything You Thought You Knew about Quantum Physics Is Different 'As a ten-year-old physics enthusiast, I would have loved The Biggest Ideas in the Universe. With this book, Sean Carroll rejects traditional elitism in physics and welcomes in anyone who knows only a little algebra but wants to understand the whole universe.' -- Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, author of The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey into Dark Matter, Spacetime, and Dreams Deferred 'Sean Carroll is a wizard of empathy. In this short book, the first of three on The Biggest Ideas in the Universe, he anticipates what's always confused you about physics and then gently guides you to enlightenment... and ultimately, to newfound wonder.' -- Steven Strogatz, author of The Joy of X and Infinite Powers 'Sean Carroll shows... that the essence of physics, including its fundamental equations, can be made accessible to anyone equipped with no more than high school math. Carroll is an accomplished science writer, a talent with few peers... The Biggest Ideas in the Universe brings science dissemination to a new level. In doing so, the biggest and most consequential idea in Carroll's trilogy might well be that substantive discussions about science can ultimately be had by everyone.' -- Science 'Sean Carroll has produced a guide to relativity theory for the 21st century, plugging the gap between "popularisations" that emphasise the oddities without giving the facts, and textbooks that train students to manipulate equations without providing insight into what it all means. He will open your eyes to the way physicists view the universe, making fundamental ideas accessible without the need for a degree in science, but bravely ignoring the old adage that adding equations will scare readers off. Don't be scared; this is the best lay-person's guide to the subject, written in an accessible, entertaining style and impeccably accurate. And the author promises to tackle quantum theory next! I can't wait.' -- John Gribbin, senior honorary research fellow in astronomy, University of Sussex 'Sean Carroll's greatest gift isn't that he's an expert on the fundamentals of physics, which he is, but that he never speaks down to his reader. He assumes that anyone, even the uninitiated, can learn to understand the formulae that underlie complicated concepts like space and time. It is a pleasure to read his work, a greater pleasure still to get a world-class education from such a witty, thoughtful teacher.' -- Annalee Newitz, author of The Future of Another Timeline 'No-nonsense, not-dumbed-down explanations of basic laws of the universe that reward close attention.' -- Kirkus 'One-of-a-kind... Carroll flips the script and illuminates the form and beauty underlying a discipline that helps us understand all that exists.' -- Booklist
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