History of Physics
Black Bodies And Quantum Cats
Tales From The Annals Of Physics
Paperback ISBN: 0143036033
Traces key developments in the field, illustrating the fundamentals of physics via films and literature, as in Back to the Future, which demonstrates the finer points of special relativity, or Poe's The Purloined Letter, which serves to illuminate the mysterious nature of neutrinos. Original.
2,600 Years of Discovery from Thales to Higgs
Paperback ISBN: 026253519x
Drawings and short essays offer engaging and accessible explanations of key ideas in physics, from triangulation to relativity and beyond. Humans have been trying to understand the physical universe since antiquity. Aristotle had one vision (the realm of the celestial spheres is perfect), and Einstein another (all motion is relativistic). More often than not, these different understandings begin with a simple drawing, a pre-mathematical picture of reality. Such drawings are a humble but effective tool of the physicist's craft, part of the tradition of thinking, teaching, and learning passed down through the centuries. This book uses drawings to help explain fifty-one key ideas of physics accessibly and engagingly. Don Lemons, a professor of physics and author of several physics books, pairs short, elegantly written essays with simple drawings that together convey important concepts from the history of physical science. Lemons proceeds chronologically, beginning with Thales' discovery of triangulation, the Pythagorean monocord, and Archimedes' explanation of balance. He continues through Leonardo's description of "earthshine" (the ghostly glow between the horns of a crescent moon), Kepler's laws of planetary motion, and Newton's cradle (suspended steel balls demonstrating by their collisions that for every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction). Reaching the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, Lemons explains the photoelectric effect, the hydrogen atom, general relativity, the global greenhouse effect, Higgs boson, and more. The essays place the science of the drawings in historical context -- describing, for example, Galileo's conflict with the Roman Catholic Church over his teaching that the sun is the center of the universe, the link between the discovery of electrical phenomena and the romanticism of William Wordsworth, and the shadow cast by the Great War over Einstein's discovery of relativity. Readers of Drawing Physics with little background in mathematics or physics will say, "Now I see, and now I understand."
The Quantum Labyrinth
How Richard Feynman and John Wheeler Revolutionized Time and Reality
Paperback ISBN: 1541672984
The story of the unlikely friendship between the two physicists who fundamentally recast the notion of time and history In 1939, Richard Feynman, a brilliant graduate of MIT, arrived in John Wheeler's Princeton office to report for duty as his teaching assistant. A lifelong friendship and enormously productive collaboration was born, despite sharp differences in personality. The soft-spoken Wheeler, though conservative in appearance, was a raging nonconformist full of wild ideas about the universe. The boisterous Feynman was a cautious physicist who believed only what could be tested. Yet they were complementary spirits. Their collaboration led to a complete rethinking of the nature of time and reality. It enabled Feynman to show how quantum reality is a combination of alternative, contradictory possibilities, and inspired Wheeler to develop his landmark concept of wormholes, portals to the future and past. Together, Feynman and Wheeler made sure that quantum physics would never be the same again.
The Age of Entanglement
When Quantum Physics Was Reborn
Paperback ISBN: 1400095263
In The Age of Entanglement, Louisa Gilder brings to life one of the pivotal debates in twentieth century physics. In 1935, Albert Einstein famously showed that, according to the quantum theory, separated particles could act as if intimately connected–a phenomenon which he derisively described as “spooky action at a distance.” In that same year, Erwin Schrödinger christened this correlation “entanglement.” Yet its existence was mostly ignored until 1964, when the Irish physicist John Bell demonstrated just how strange this entanglement really was. Drawing on the papers, letters, and memoirs of the twentieth century’s greatest physicists, Gilder both humanizes and dramatizes the story by employing the scientists’ own words in imagined face-to-face dialogues. The result is a richly illuminating exploration of one of the most exciting concepts of quantum physics.
A Bouquet of Dyson
and Other Reflections on Science and Scientists
Hardcover ISBN: 9813231920
"My friendship with Freeman Dyson goes back over a half century. My first contact with him goes back to the late 1950s, when I was at the Institute for Advanced Study, and then evolved when I was a consultant at General Atomics in La Jolla, California. Freeman was then trying to design a space ship -- the Orion -- which would be propelled by atomic bombs. When I left the Institute, Freeman and I continued our correspondence and I saved his letters. They are written in an almost calligraphically elegant handwriting. It is hard to see how you could make a mistake in a mathematical computation if you wrote that clearly. The letters show his human side and his enormous range of knowledge. There are then two essays involving the physicist Fritz Houtermans whowas an extraordinarily colorful character. There is a brief essay on Einstein's collaboration with a fraud. There is even an essay on the Titius-Bode law and the new exo-planets. Because of my enduring interest in nuclear weapons, the reader will find essays devoted to that. There is also a bit of fiction at the end"--
A Bouquet of Dyson And Other Reflections on Science and Scientists
1st Edition Paperback ISBN: 9813238283
Berstein recounts his friendship with the scientist Freedom Dyson (1923-) known for his work in quantum electrodynamics, solid-state physics, astronomy and nuclear engineering. From his first contact in the late 1950s, their relationship evolved to the time of Dyson
2,600 Years of Discovery from Thales to Higgs
Hardcover ISBN: 0262035901
"The subject of "Seeing Physics" is our understanding of the physical universe as organized into 51 one thousand-word essays each anchored in a drawing that conveys a key idea. Each essay expands on the science of the drawing and places it in a broader human context. Many people have an interest in the latest in science and technology. But many, even among this group, do not understand basic principles from the 2600-year old intellectual tradition of physics. The old ideas are still new to those who don't understand them. Some of the classic discoveries and theories Lemons discusses include Archimedes' Principle, Alhazen's early theory on the optics of vision and refracted rays, Oresme's Triangle, how Copernicus was able to discover heliocentricism, and Rontgen's accidental discovery of X-rays"--
A Very Short Introduction
Paperback ISBN: 0192854569
In a startling reinterpretation of Galileo's trial, Stillman Drake advances the hypothesis that Galileo's prosecution and condemnation by the Inquisition was caused not by his defiance of the Church but by the hostility of contemporary philosophers. Galileo's own beautifully lucid arguments are used in this volume to show how his scientific method was utterly divorced from the Aristotelian approach to physics; it was based on a search not for causes but for laws. Galileo's methods had an overwhelming significance for the development of modern physics, and they led to a final parting of the ways between science and philosophy. Now, in this extraordinary and concise introduction, Drake provides a stimulating view of Galileo's life and works, providing a fresh perspective on Galileo's methodology and his final incrimination.