Readers worldwide have come to know the work of Stephen Hawking through his phenomenal million-copy hardcover best-seller A Brief History of Time. Bantam is proud to present the paperback edition of Dr. Hawking's first new book since that event, a collection of fascinating and illuminating essays, and a remarkable interview broadcast by the BBC on Christmas Day, 1992. These fourteen pieces reveal Hawking variously as the scientist, the man, the concerned world citizen, and-always-the rigorous and imaginative thinker. Hawking's wit, directness of style, and absence of pomp characterize all of them, whether he is remembering his first experience at nursery school; calling for adequate education in science that will enable the public to play its part in making informed decisions on matters such as nuclear disarmament; exploring the origins of the future of the universe; or reflecting on the history of A Brief History of Time. Black Holes and Baby Universes is an important work from one of the greatest minds of the twentieth century.
Balanced between poetry and physics, astronomer Chet Raymo's elegant essays ponder the connections between faith and reason. His odyssey through the heavens links the mysterious phenomena of the night sky with the human mind and spirit, showing us how the stars reinforce our humanity as he ranges through the realms of mythology, literature, religion, history, and anthropology.
Almost forgotten is the Harvard Observatory "computer"--a human number cruncher hired to calculate the positions and luminosities of stars in astronomical photographs--who found the key to the mystery. Radcliffe-educated Henrietta Swan Leavitt, fighting ill health and progressive deafness, stumbled upon a new law that allowed astronomers to use variable stars--those whose brightness rhythmically changes--as a cosmic yardstick. Miss Leavitt's Stars is both a masterly account of how we measure the universe and the moving story of a neglected genius
Known for his ability to blend content, accessibility, and humor, Tyson is a natural teacher who simplifies some of the most complex concepts in astrophysics while simultaneously sharing his infectious excitement about our universe.
Revised Fourth Edition: updated for use through 2025.
The first three editions of NightWatch sold more than 600,000 copies, making it the top-selling stargazing guide in the world for the last 20 years. The key feature of this classic title is the section of star charts that are cherished by backyard astronomers everywhere. Each new edition has outsold the previous one because of thorough revisions and additional new material.
NightWatch has been acclaimed as the best general interest introduction to astronomy. The fourth edition has improvements over the 3rd edition in every chapter, including:
- The famous charts, ideal for stargazers using a small telescope or binoculars
- A complete update of the equipment section, including computerized telescopes
- An enlarged photography section, including how-to instructions for using the new generation of digital cameras for astronomical photography, both with and without a telescope
- The tables of future solar and lunar eclipses, planetary conjunctions and planet locations, updated through 2025.
This edition includes star charts for use in the southern hemisphere. There are also dozens of new photographs throughout the book that show the latest thrilling discoveries made by current space observatories and probes.
From the author of Astrophysics for People in a Hurry and the host of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, a memoir about growing up and a young man's budding scientific curiosity. This is the absorbing story of Neil deGrasse Tyson's lifelong fascination with the night sky, a restless wonder that began some thirty years ago on the roof of his Bronx apartment building and eventually led him to become the director of the Hayden Planetarium. A unique chronicle of a young man who at one time was both nerd and jock, Tyson's memoir could well inspire other similarly curious youngsters to pursue their dreams. Like many athletic kids he played baseball, won medals in track and swimming, and was captain of his high school wrestling team. But at the same time he was setting up a telescope on winter nights, taking an advanced astronomy course at the Hayden Planetarium, and spending a summer vacation at an astronomy camp in the Mojave Desert. Eventually, his scientific curiosity prevailed, and he went on to graduate in physics from Harvard and to earn a Ph.D. in astrophysics from Columbia. There followed postdoctoral research at Princeton. In 1996, he became the director of the Hayden Planetarium, where some twenty-five years earlier he had been awed by the spectacular vista in the sky theater. Tyson pays tribute to the key teachers and mentors who recognized his precocious interests and abilities, and helped him succeed. He intersperses personal reminiscences with thoughts on scientific literacy, careful science vs. media hype, the possibility that a meteor could someday hit the Earth, dealing with society's racial stereotypes, what science can and cannot say about the existence of God, and many other interesting insights about science, society, and the nature of the universe. Now available in paperback with a new preface and other additions, this engaging memoir will enlighten and inspire an appreciation of astronomy and the wonders of our universe.
An unparalleled history of astronomy told through 100 primary documents—from the Maya’s first recorded efforts to predict the cycles of Venus to the 1998 paper that posited an accelerating universe.
Award-winning science writer Marcia Bartusiak is a wonderfully compelling guide in this sweeping overview. Her authoritative, accessible commentaries on each document provide historical context and underscore the more intriguing and revolutionary aspects of the discoveries.
Here are records of the earliest naked-eye celestial observations and cosmic mappings; the discovery of planets; the first attempts to measure the speed of light and the distance of stars; the classification of stars; the introduction of radio and x-ray astronomy; the discovery of black holes, quasars, dark matter, the Big Bang, and much more. Here is the work of Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Newton, Halley, Hubble, and Einstein, as well as that of dozens of lesser-known scientists who have significantly contributed to our picture of the universe.
An enthralling, comprehensive history that spans more than two millennia—this is essential reading for professional astronomers, science history buffs, and backyard stargazers alike.
The #1 New York Times bestselling memoir that inspired the film October Sky, Rocket Boys is a uniquely American memoir--a powerful, luminous story of coming of age at the dawn of the 1960s, of a mother's love and a father's fears, of a group of young men who dreamed of launching rockets into outer space . . . and who made those dreams come true.With the grace of a natural storyteller, NASA engineer Homer Hickam paints a warm, vivid portrait of the harsh West Virginia mining town of his youth, evoking a time of innocence and promise, when anything was possible, even in a company town that swallowed its men alive. A story of romance and loss, of growing up and getting out, Homer Hickam's lush, lyrical memoir is a chronicle of triumph--at once exquisitely written and marvelously entertaining. Now with 8 pages of photographs. A number-one New York Times bestseller in mass market, brought to the screen in the acclaimed film October Sky, Homer Hickam's memoir, nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award, comes to trade paperback with an all-new photo insert. One of the most beloved bestsellers in recent years, Rocket Boys is a uniquely American memoir. A powerful, luminous story of coming of age at the end of the 1950s, it is the story of a mother's love and a father's fears, of growing up and getting out. With the grace of a natural storyteller, Homer Hickam looks back after a distinguished NASA career to tell his own true story of growing up in a dying coal town and of how, against the odds, he made his dreams of launching rockets into outer space come true. A story of romance and loss and a keen portrait of life at an extraordinary point in American history, Rocket Boys is a chronicle of triumph.
This witty and amusing exploration of the physical universe explains fundamental concepts in language that is clear to anyone with little or no scientific background. Tyson transforms everyday experiences into venues of cosmic enlightenment as he probes the philosophy, methods, and discoveries of science, including stellar evolution, the conservation of energy, the electromagnetic spectrum, gravity and thermodynamics. Deftly demystifying astronomical terms and concepts such as the Big Bang, black holes, redshifts, syzygy, and Kirkwood Gaps, Universe Down to Earth traces the life of the stars from birth to death; presents the Periodic Table of Elements, highlighting noteworthy elements such as titanium, iron, and hydrogen; gives an unorthodox yet entertaining tour of famous constellations; and tackles modern-day astrology.