Lost In Math

Author: Sabine Hossenfelder
Publisher: Hachette UK
ISBN: 0465094260
Size: 69.81 MB
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A contrarian argues that modern physicists' obsession with beauty has given us wonderful math but bad science Whether pondering black holes or predicting discoveries at CERN, physicists believe the best theories are beautiful, natural, and elegant, and this standard separates popular theories from disposable ones. This is why, Sabine Hossenfelder argues, we have not seen a major breakthrough in the foundations of physics for more than four decades. The belief in beauty has become so dogmatic that it now conflicts with scientific objectivity: observation has been unable to confirm mindboggling theories, like supersymmetry or grand unification, invented by physicists based on aesthetic criteria. Worse, these "too good to not be true" theories are actually untestable and they have left the field in a cul-de-sac. To escape, physicists must rethink their methods. Only by embracing reality as it is can science discover the truth.

Lost In Math

Author: Sabine Hossenfelder
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 9780465094257
Size: 67.27 MB
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Most physicists think of beauty as the royal road to discovery; a leading critic shows it is instead the road to nowhere Whether pondering black holes or predicting discoveries at CERN, physicists believe the best theories are beautiful, natural, and elegant, and this standard separates popular theories from disposable ones. This is why, Sabine Hossenfelder argues, we have not seen a major breakthrough in the foundations of physics for more than four decades. The belief in beauty has become so dogmatic that it now conflicts with scientific objectivity: observation has been unable to confirm mindboggling theories, like supersymmetry or grand unification, invented by physicists based on aesthetic criteria. Worse, these "too good to not be true" theories are actually untestable and they have left the field in a cul-de-sac. To escape, physicists must rethink their methods. Only by embracing reality as it is can science discover the truth.

Experimental Search For Quantum Gravity

Author: Sabine Hossenfelder
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319645374
Size: 32.28 MB
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This book summarizes recent developments in the research area of quantum gravity phenomenology. A series of short and nontechnical essays lays out the prospects of various experimental possibilities and their current status. Finding observational evidence for the quantization of space-time was long thought impossible. In the last decade however, new experimental design and technological advances have changed the research landscape and opened new perspectives on quantum gravity. Formerly dominated by purely theoretical constructions, quantum gravity now has a lively phenomenology to offer. From high precision measurements using macroscopic quantum oscillators to new analysis methods of the cosmic microwave background, no stone is being left unturned in the experimental search for quantum gravity. This book sheds new light on the connection of astroparticle physics with the quantum gravity problem. Gravitational waves and their detection are covered. It illustrates findings from the interconnection between general relativity, black holes and Planck stars. Finally, the return on investment in quantum-gravitation research is illuminated. The book is intended for graduate students and researchers entering the field.

String Theory And The Scientific Method

Author: Richard Dawid
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107067588
Size: 40.43 MB
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String theory has played a highly influential role in theoretical physics for nearly three decades and has substantially altered our view of the elementary building principles of the Universe. However, the theory remains empirically unconfirmed, and is expected to remain so for the foreseeable future. So why do string theorists have such a strong belief in their theory? This book explores this question, offering a novel insight into the nature of theory assessment itself. Dawid approaches the topic from a unique position, having extensive experience in both philosophy and high-energy physics. He argues that string theory is just the most conspicuous example of a number of theories in high-energy physics where non-empirical theory assessment has an important part to play. Aimed at physicists and philosophers of science, the book does not use mathematical formalism and explains most technical terms.

A Beautiful Question

Author: Frank Wilczek
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0143109367
Size: 46.41 MB
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A respected physicist presents a survey of related discoveries, from Plato and Pythagoras up to the present, that explore how intertwined ideas about beauty and art are with scientific understandings of the cosmos.

Quantum Physics For Dummies

Author: Steven Holzner
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118460863
Size: 24.98 MB
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Quantum Physics For Dummies, Revised Edition helps make quantum physics understandable and accessible. From what quantum physics can do for the world to understanding hydrogen atoms, readers will get complete coverage of the subject, along with numerous examples to help them tackle the tough equations. Compatible with classroom text books and courses, Quantum Physics For Dummies, Revised Edition lets students study at their own paces and helps them prepare for graduate or professional exams. Coverage includes: The Schrodinger Equation and its Applications The Foundations of Quantum Physics Vector Notation Spin Scattering Theory, Angular Momentum, and more Your plain-English guide to understanding and working with the micro world Quantum physics — also called quantum mechanics or quantum field theory — can be daunting for even the most dedicated student or enthusiast of science, math, or physics. This friendly, concise guide makes this challenging subject understandable and accessible, from atoms to particles to gases and beyond. Plus, it's packed with fully explained examples to help you tackle the tricky equations like a pro! Compatible with any classroom course — study at your own pace and prepare for graduate or professional exams Your journey begins here — understand what quantum physics is and what kinds of problems it can solve Know the basic math — from state vectors to quantum matrix manipulations, get the foundation you need to proceed Put quantum physics to work — make sense of Schrödinger's equation and handle particles bound in square wells and harmonic oscillators Solve problems in three dimensions — use the full operators to handle wave functions and eigenvectors to find the natural wave functions of a system Discover the latest research — learn the cutting-edge quantum physics theories that aim to explain the universe itself

Farewell To Reality

Author: Jim Baggott
Publisher: Open Road Media
ISBN: 1453299149
Size: 65.36 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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From acclaimed science author Jim Baggot, a pointed critique of modern theoretical physics In this stunning new volume, Jim Baggott argues that there is no observational or experimental evidence for many of the ideas of modern theoretical physics: super-symmetric particles, super strings, the multiverse, the holographic principle, or the anthropic cosmological principle. These theories are not only untrue; they are not even science. They are fairy-tale physics: fantastical, bizarre and often outrageous, perhaps even confidence-trickery. This book provides a much-needed antidote. Informed, comprehensive, and balanced, it offers lay readers the latest ideas about the nature of physical reality while clearly distinguishing between fact and fantasy. With its engaging portraits of many central figures of modern physics, including Paul Davies, John Barrow, Brian Greene, Stephen Hawking, and Leonard Susskind, it promises to be essential reading for all readers interested in what we know and don’t know about the nature of the universe and reality itself.

The Man Who Touched His Own Heart

Author: Rob Dunn
Publisher: Little, Brown
ISBN: 0316225800
Size: 58.84 MB
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The secret history of our most vital organ--the human heart The Man Who Touched His Own Heart tells the raucous, gory, mesmerizing story of the heart, from the first "explorers" who dug up cadavers and plumbed their hearts' chambers, through the first heart surgeries-which had to be completed in three minutes before death arrived-to heart transplants and the latest medical efforts to prolong our hearts' lives, almost defying nature in the process. Thought of as the seat of our soul, then as a mysteriously animated object, the heart is still more a mystery than it is understood. Why do most animals only get one billion beats? (And how did modern humans get to over two billion-effectively letting us live out two lives?) Why are sufferers of gingivitis more likely to have heart attacks? Why do we often undergo expensive procedures when cheaper ones are just as effective? What do Da Vinci, Mary Shelley, and contemporary Egyptian archaeologists have in common? And what does it really feel like to touch your own heart, or to have someone else's beating inside your chest? Rob Dunn's fascinating history of our hearts brings us deep inside the science, history, and stories of the four chambers we depend on most.

First You Build A Cloud

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 9780156006460
Size: 72.52 MB
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An introduction to physics examines the theoretical principles developed by Galileo, Bohr, and Newton, and explains how the laws of physics pervade everyday human life

The Physicist And The Philosopher

Author: Jimena Canales
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400865778
Size: 77.44 MB
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On April 6, 1922, in Paris, Albert Einstein and Henri Bergson publicly debated the nature of time. Einstein considered Bergson's theory of time to be a soft, psychological notion, irreconcilable with the quantitative realities of physics. Bergson, who gained fame as a philosopher by arguing that time should not be understood exclusively through the lens of science, criticized Einstein's theory of time for being a metaphysics grafted on to science, one that ignored the intuitive aspects of time. The Physicist and the Philosopher tells the remarkable story of how this explosive debate transformed our understanding of time and drove a rift between science and the humanities that persists today. Jimena Canales introduces readers to the revolutionary ideas of Einstein and Bergson, describes how they dramatically collided in Paris, and traces how this clash of worldviews reverberated across the twentieth century. She shows how it provoked responses from figures such as Bertrand Russell and Martin Heidegger, and carried repercussions for American pragmatism, logical positivism, phenomenology, and quantum mechanics. Canales explains how the new technologies of the period—such as wristwatches, radio, and film—helped to shape people’s conceptions of time and further polarized the public debate. She also discusses how Bergson and Einstein, toward the end of their lives, each reflected on his rival’s legacy—Bergson during the Nazi occupation of Paris and Einstein in the context of the first hydrogen bomb explosion. The Physicist and the Philosopher is a magisterial and revealing account that shows how scientific truth was placed on trial in a divided century marked by a new sense of time.