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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two of the best give great insight into fundamentals.
Feynman yet again gives great insight into the laws of physics, this time exploring the reasons for existence of anti-particles, starting from the dirac equation etc.. Plus some really outstanding photographs, that fella Weinberg will be chuffed to have his name mentioned on the book cover!
Published on 17 Nov 1998

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unfortunately it wasn't what Feynman intended ...
I was one of the two students who compiled these lecture notes for Feynman and Weinberg (my name is on the inside cover). For Weinberg's lecture it was an easy job, because he gave us very comprehensive lecture notes. With Feynman, we went to the lecture and took notes and did the best we could, but in mid/late 1987 we heard that Feynman wasn't happy with our effort and...
Published 16 months ago by Paul Doust


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unfortunately it wasn't what Feynman intended ..., 15 May 2013
This review is from: Elementary Particles and the Laws of Physics: The 1986 Dirac Memorial Lectures (Kindle Edition)
I was one of the two students who compiled these lecture notes for Feynman and Weinberg (my name is on the inside cover). For Weinberg's lecture it was an easy job, because he gave us very comprehensive lecture notes. With Feynman, we went to the lecture and took notes and did the best we could, but in mid/late 1987 we heard that Feynman wasn't happy with our effort and thought that we'd misunderstood some things. Unfortunately, before the situation was resolved Feynman died, so we never found out what we needed to improve. However, at least these days I think you can find the lecture on youtube.com.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Summary of Paul Dirac Memorial Lectures, 17 Oct 2008
By 
Rama Rao "Rama" (Annandale, VA, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This book is a summary of 1986 Paul Dirac memorial lectures delivered by physicists, Richard Feynman and Steven Weinberg. This book requires the knowledge of undergraduate level physics and perturbation theory, and it is described in two chapters; the first is by Feynman under the title "The reason for antiparticle." This section describes the first attempt of Dirac in 1928 to "wed" newly discovered quantum mechanics and theory of relativity. When relativity was included into Schrodinger's pure wave equations, the relativistic equation (Dirac equations) would only be satisfied if there were two solutions corresponding to positive and negative energy states, and in the case of the electron, an electron with a positive charge was required for negative energy state. Thus the existence of antiparticles (positron) was predicted as a direct result of combining the relativity with quantum mechanics. Paul Dirac was also able to explain the origin of the electron magnetic moment and spin. Feynman postulated one of the revolutionary thought in quantum field theory, that antiparticles could be viewed as particles going back in time. This should not be taken as a physical reality in which cause - effect sequence could be revered. Because during the Lorentz transformation the time sequence of two events gets reversed, one of them could not have been the cause of the other because the two events are outside each other's sphere of influence. In frame A, if event 1 occurs first and event 2 occurs after event 1, but in frame B, event 2 occurs before event 1. This is possible in relativity because the time ordering of two events is not an absolute concept; one event can be in the past of another event in one frame, and in its future in a different frame. An observer in frame A will see an electron before event 1, an electron between events 1 and 2, and an electron after event 2, but in frame B, he will see one electron before event 2 and only one electron after event 1.

In the second part under the title, Toward the final laws of physics, Steven Weinberg discusses the developments in physics to explain physical reality with one set of physical laws. This has lead to several unsuccessful theories to unify relativity and quantum physics, finally leading to String theory.

Paul Dirac believed that physical laws should have mathematical beauty. Both Feynman and Weinberg have made beautiful theories. Weinberg played a key role in the unification of electricity and magnetism with the weak forces of radioactivity, and Feynamn expanded the understanding of quantum electrodynamics; they were best suited to deliver the Paul Dirac memorial lectures.

1. Paul Dirac: The Man and His Work
2. The Strangest Man: The Life of Paul Dirac
3. Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac: Reminiscences About a Great Physicist
4. Positron Physics (Cambridge Monographs on Atomic, Molecular and Chemical Physics)
5. New Theories of Everything: The Quest for Ultimate Explanation
6. The Search for Superstrings, Symmetry, and the Theory of Everything
7. QED - The Strange Theory of Light and Matter (Penguin Press Science)
8. Surely You're Joking, Mr.Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character
9. Dreams of a Final Theory: The Scientist's Search for the Ultimate Laws of Nature
10. Lectures on Quantum Mechanics
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but limited appeal, 21 Jun 2008
By 
Never the Twain (Suffolk, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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None of the previous reviews matched my own experience of this book. For a start there is only one picture (of Dirac); perhaps the comment refered to the feynman diagrams?

To start with this book contains two lectures by two different people. Weinberg's lecture is very general, but contains insights from 20+ yearsago. I personally prefer 'road to reality' by penrose, but the explanation of why the lagrangian form of the standard model cannot be the form of any final understanding is very clear.

Feynman's lecture is the better one. It leaps forward through some of Dirac's work, but follows a very unique route. The speed is sometimes rapier like, and there are a couple of changes in direction that you have to read and re read to catch, but it is a wonderful journey and very accessible to people outside of university physics departments (I graduated 25 years ago) despite the plethora of equations.

Worth the 2.70 I paid, for a new book, to an amazon dealer.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two of the best give great insight into fundamentals., 17 Nov 1998
By A Customer
Feynman yet again gives great insight into the laws of physics, this time exploring the reasons for existence of anti-particles, starting from the dirac equation etc.. Plus some really outstanding photographs, that fella Weinberg will be chuffed to have his name mentioned on the book cover!
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7 of 28 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Make sure you have a firm grip on quantum physics, 6 Jun 2002
By 
I have purchased many books with Richard feynman name on the front cover, for example, Q.E.D the strange theory of light and matter, was an excellent book, I actually understood what was going on. This books fails in just about every area. It is pointless to go into detail, but if you are not in your 2nd or 3rd year at university studying quantum physics, don't waste your time.
On a good note, his writing does seem to improve towards the ending i.e. Towards the final laws of physics, is easier to comprehend. It has more reading material and less mathematical equation which have useless meanings. The best thing he said was " specifying the symmetry group of nature may be all we need to say about the physical world, beyond the principles of quantum mechanics", but he wasn't certain. Ha! anyhow If he feels that the government does not fund particle physist enough, maybe they ought to find better ways of explaining themselves. especially through mathematics...
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