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Customer Review

5.0 out of 5 stars Hard science, 17 Jun. 2011
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This review is from: Time, Space and Things (Canto) (Paperback)
I took six months to read this book's 160 pages. I really had to concentrate hard and sometimes I read a page two or three times before I got what it meant - maybe (I should add that I have a degree in foreign languages and that my science and maths teachers at school were a disgrace) Yet, I found the idea of explaining modern physics and all its very, very strange concepts to people who are not scientists or advanced students a great idea, and I am grateful to Mr Ridley for his attempt, which is I think successful. I suppose every reader will find different chapters more or less accessible - the one on quarks definitely defeated me, and I still find wave packets a tricky idea, but I have a much clearer idea of relativity, and I know what the uncertainty principle is and so much more - and I am happy that I do because we all should know the basic truths about reality, every human being who is not struggling to survive should want to know about the universe, and matter, time and space. The language is very pleasant, and I especially appreciated the choice of quotations from English literature (from Milton to Carroll to Blake: Energy is eternal delight). The last chapters, about the dangers of modern physics - namely, to go hunting for what is not there, is really interesting, and the final comparison of the modern ohysicist to a fell walker, who must beware of crags and wrong tracks, and know that after one peak, there'll be a new one to climb was fascinating.
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Location: Italy

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