This is an interactive version of Stephen Hawking's internationally bestselling book A Brief History of Time
, which is often credited with having started a craze for books on science. His book was also the butt of many jokes about the number of people who bought it--but never managed to read it. This was because its subject matter can be obscure for non-specialists. Now, this excellent CD offers a helping hand, and guides you through the difficulties.
The work covers 10 fields of astro-physics--from particles to the nature of time, and from the origin of the universe to the nature of gravity. It also covers the history of peoples' understanding of the universe from the ancient Greeks to current theories. Using the CD-ROM, these topics can be approached in a linear or topic-based way, and you can choose to read the text on screen, have it read to you by Hawking himself (the slowness of his distinctive delivery is actually an advantage as it gives you time to absorb the material) or through rather Monty Pythonesque animated cartoons. The cartoons can be irritating at times, but, along with the many video clips and other animations, they're a great help in understanding concepts. The system requirements are a mere 5Mb of disk space, double-speed CD drive and Pentium-type CPU. The software design is easy to use and the package provides a remarkably low-priced introduction to the secrets of the universe. --Julia Cresswell
Delving into the depths of the universe this PC CD-ROM helps you to understand complicated theories on space, time and the origin of the species in a fun and challenging yet educational presentation. Battling motor neurone disease for almost 30 years, Stephen Hawking believes that everyone should be able to understand the basics of physics and cosmology when explained in a way which is accessible to all. The concepts Hawking presents are fascinating and fun, meant to challenge and entertain. From Stephen's room you can click on various icons that lead into an adventure related to a topic in his book. With theories illustrated by a combination of graphics, animation, video, audio voice-overs and text, the world of astrophysics is brought to the forefront of modern technology. Hawking gives you the choice of exploring the disk and his arguments linearly, as per the book itself, or moving through the topics in a pattern of your own choosing. Converse with Physicists John Wheeler and Brandon Carter on subjects such as Black Holes and the Expanding Universe. Take an in depth look at Physics with Einstein and uncover the key elements and hidden secrets of our existence in this excellently presented CD-ROM.