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The Big Questions: Physics [Hardcover]

Michael Brooks
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Price: 12.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

4 Feb 2010 Big Questions

The Big Questions series is designed to let renowned experts address the 20 most fundamental and frequently asked questions of a major branch of science or philosophy. Each 3000-word essay simply and concisely examines a question that has eternally perplexed enquiring minds, and provides answers from history's great thinkers. This ambitious project is a unique distillation of humanity's best ideas.

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The Big Questions: Physics + The Big Questions: Philosophy + The Big Questions The Universe
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Quercus (4 Feb 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849161461
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849161466
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 168,530 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

The Big Questions series confronts the fundamental problems of science and philosophy that have perplexed enquiring minds throughout history, and provides and explains the answers of our greatest thinkers. In Big Questions: Physics, Michael Brooks demystifies 20 mind-stretching questions about quantum physics, relativity and the true nature of reality. What is the Point of Physics? What is Time? What Happened to Schrödinger's Cat? Why Does an Apple Fall? Are Solids Really Solid? Why is There No Such Thing as a Free Lunch? Is Everything Ultimately Random? What is the God Particle? Am I Unique in the Universe? Can We Travel Through Time? Why Does E=MC2? Can I Change the Universe with a Single Glance? Is Earth's Magnetic Shield Failing? Does Chaos Theory Spell Disaster? What is Light? Is String Theory Really About Strings? Why is There Something Rather Than Nothing? Do We Live in a Computer Simulation? Which is Nature's Strongest Force? What is the Ultimate Nature of Reality?

About the Author

Michael Brooks, author of the acclaimed 13 Things That Don't Make Sense, holds a PhD in quantum physics. He is a journalist and broadcaster, and acts a physics and cosmology consultant to New Scientist magazine. He has lectured at Cambridge University, the American Museum of Natural History and New York University, and his writing has appeared in many national newspapers, including the Guardian, the Independent, the Observer and the Times Higher.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read 19 April 2010
This is a good book. It covers all of the ideas of modern physics without the use of mathematics. While not a text book it does give a thorough background to the more popular topics covered at A level and undergraduate level physics: from the big bang through quantum physics and computing to chaos theory. The text is clear and the chapters are quite short: ideal for dipping in and out. The chapters do not go into great depth, so if you want more detail it might be better to read this followed by another book on your specific topic of interest. The cover is rigid and the elasticated strap-come-bookmark gives the book an authoritive feel. It is small and easy to carry round. I couldn't put it down.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Big Question: Physics 30 May 2010
`The Big Questions: Physics' is a A5 sized hardback book that explores twenty of the most intriguing questions about physics. Each question is approximately ten pages long and explains the basic concepts of physics in a relatively clear and erudite way. Topics covered include What is Time?, What Happened to Schrödinger's Cat?, What is the God Particle?, Why Does E=MC2?, Is String Theory Really About Strings? And more besides. There are various quotes smattered throughout, as well as diagrams to illustrate and clarify the more complex ideas. This is a good introduction to what can be a rather daunting subject and offers an easy way to engage with core ideas that affect us all. This book has a rubber band incorporated into the cover, like those found on stationary notebooks, which can be used as a bookmark and makes for a nice touch. All in all this is an interesting and thought provoking book that should stand you in good stead in understanding those key physic concepts that have always eluded you up until now.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down! 27 Feb 2011
This is a great little book.....which gives a good general overview of the most talked about topics in physics....including 'String Theory'.
It's A5 in is good for those 'on the go' readers, like myself....and is nicely written with an easy to read layout, making the rather complex text seem easier to break down.
Although i thoroughly enjoyed this book, i felt that it couldn't possibly be appreciated fully, unless you have a good prior knowledge of physics, as it does not delve to deeply into scientific terminology. If you don't know anything about quantum physics or may find it a little hard to follow.
It may be useful to read '50 Physics ideas' by Joanne Baker before attempting this it will give you a sound understanding of the key concepts of physics first.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Big Questions 19 Aug 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Covers key ideas in physics. Did I enjoy it? - very much. Is it suitable for the general reader with curiosity about physics? - yes. Is mathematical knowledge needed? - not really. Are the ideas stimulating? - certainly. Does it look at more advanced issues? - yes. Are there any typos? - no. Is it good value? - yes. Would it provide a suitable background for further reading? - yes. Is the language clear and readable? - yes. Are the illustrations clear enough? - yes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book... but BEWARE! 7 Nov 2013
By Wicksy
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I received this book yesterday and I know its brilliant even though I haven't read it. How? Because its exactly the same book as "Can we travel through time?" which I bought some time ago!D'oh!
Personally I don't think that's very clear from the description but maybe I'm a bit dim.

Anyway, it's a cracking read - highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars QUESTIONS ANSWERED. 27 Jun 2014
By Catch22
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
5 STAR rating because as well as being a good read, it's a handy reference book.
You don't need a degree in physics to understand it, and if you are interested in
this book you probably already have at least a limited knowledge of science, which
would be helpful. Very clear helpful explanations.
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