2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
A good review of difficult concepts for the non-specialist,
This review is from: The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design (Paperback)
The author succeeds in presenting a non-mathematical summary of current ideas in Theoretical Physics. He has an engaging writing style and uses analogies, anecdotes and humour to help combat reader information overload. Non-intuitive ideas come thick and fast throughout the book. Credit is given to a large number of Physicists many of whom appear to be personal friends. The author does promote String Theory but is unapologetic claiming that there is no current alternative approach to discuss. Some of the ideas are quite disturbing. It appears that current theories cannot be subjected to experiment which made this reader consider whether the word 'story' rather than 'theory' is more appropriate. The author has strong personal views and gives short shrift to the so-called Anthropic Principle. Regarding God, clearly he does ally himself with those that have "no need for this hypothesis". Therefore it is surprising to see frequent use of the word 'believe' in the latter chapters and one instance of the word 'preaching'. Perhaps Theroretical Physicists do have something in common with fundamental religious groups. Perosnally I hope there is something fundamentally wrong with the mathematics such that the Landscape of the title, the Megaverse and Pocket Universes are just figments of the imagination.
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Initial post: 13 Jul 2011 12:40:57 BDT
Thomas J. Theobald says:
I suspect you'll find a qualitative difference in the author's use of the word "believe" versus that of a religious individual. To believe something because all prevailing evidence points towards that conclusion is enormously different than believing something because some bronze-age nomad scrawled it on the wall in his own blood and called it prophecy.
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