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Nothing: From absolute zero to cosmic oblivion - amazing insights into nothingness Paperback – 7 Nov 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Profile Books (7 Nov 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846685184
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846685187
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.8 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,764 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By S. Zam on 8 Jan 2014
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nice collection of articles from the magazine, makes interesting reading and can be read in short bursts as its not one long tome...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Andy Parkin on 6 Mar 2014
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The articles on physics and cosmology were excellent and I would have liked more of the same. I was disappointed that about half of the book was given over to the index and credits.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Mel on 7 Dec 2013
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Great to pick up and put down, interesting if not querky. Essential reading for those who love science and understand it or for those who want something different to read whilst learning something
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. G. Saxby on 26 Feb 2014
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The varied subjects of these essays do to some extent stretch the concept of 'nothing' a little; but every one is interesting. I went through the whole book at a single (very much protracted) sitting. No wonder it reached the best seller lists.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. F. Cayley on 17 Feb 2014
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A set of well-explained essays on science topics loosely (and in some cases closely) connected to the concept of nothing, ranging from biology and medicine to maths and cosmology. You do not need to be an expert to understand them.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Tony on 21 Dec 2013
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Very fascinating read, you can learn a lot from this little book.
You need to know much more about nothing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lola TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 2 Jun 2014
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The moment I saw a book about nothing I had to get it! What a fascinating subject, what a great way to acquaint the reader with a concept of nothing - a series of New Scientist articles under one cover. Yes, it all sounds right, and it all sounds like a good (if not utterly fascinating) read, BUT...

When we start to dig into concept of "nothing", we discover (quote quickly) that "nothing" is quite elusive and exists, perhaps, only as a turn of phrase. Take absolute zero (i.e. temperature), take Universe before the big bang, and take internal organs of a body that are redundant, take placebo medicine, take your mind when it's idle - does it sound like nothing to you? It does not to me. There is always something behind nothing. And while concept of explaining what the python does while it hangs out for weeks doing nothing is more or less easy, I doubt a lot of people would grasp concept of vacuum or universe before the big bang (if we could, perhaps there would be many more Nobel laureates among us!). What I mean, it's all fascinating and super interesting, but I wonder how many people would be able to share their new found knowledge (unless it's about vestigiality (there are 86 organs in a human body which are considered useless!) - a concept easily explained and understood and illustrated by a number of easy examples).

So, some articles are curious and will definitely make you think and discuss your newly found knowledge. Some articles I just skim-read (because I do not have enough physics and chemistry knowledge to fully understand the concept of particles - and I guess it would be pretty hard to explain the beginning of the Universe in an article of a dozen pages).

Stimulating read, nonetheless.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Professor George F. Hart on 23 May 2014
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I was quite disappointed by this issue from the New Scientist. I expect cutting edge from the magazine but instead got old news - most of which is available on w3, allbeit in slightly different form. Certainly , I learned some new things - and this made reading the book worth the time, however, as a whole, although each article was well enough presented, I would categorize it as a mediocre effort and put the blame on the editors not the individual authors.
Sorry guys!

George F. Hart, Professor emeritus, LSU.
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