The Universe And The Teacup

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 9780156006569
Size: 70.40 MB
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A noted science writer explores how mathematics can explain such events as the O. J. Simpson verdict and the errors undermining the infamous Bell Curve, and introduces a little-known woman without whom the theory of relativity never would have worked. Reprint. 35,000 first printing.

The Universe And The Teacup

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0547546149
Size: 62.30 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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From the acclaimed Los Angeles Times science writer, a wise, witty, and elegant study of how math provides practical solutions to everyday problems. Are the secrets of the universe written in words—or is it all about the digits? K.C. Cole follows up her paean to the power of physics, Sympathetic Vibrations, with this engaging and accessible guide to the might and majesty of mathematics. The Universe and the Teacup uses relatable examples, humorous prose, and whimsical line drawings to demonstrate math’s ability to “translate the complexity of the world into manageable patterns.” Cole shows how mathematical concepts illuminate everything from human risk-taking behavior to astronomical investigation, game theory to logic problems—not to mention the very structure of the universe itself. Brimming with trivia stressing the importance of math throughout history, this is a book both math nerds and the “innumerate” everyday person can enjoy in equal measure. “Cole writes clearly, simply and vividly,” noted The New York Times. “She so obviously likes mathematics, the reader can't help liking it too.” Filled with “a thousand fascinating facts and shrewd observations (Martin Gardner, Los Angeles Times), this book demonstrates how the truth and beauty of everything, from relativity to rainbows, is all in the numbers.

First You Build A Cloud

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0544080149
Size: 29.79 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This clearly written and compelling look at physics and physicists offers “thousands of new ways to see our daily world more richly” (Douglas Hofstadter, author of Gödel, Escher, Bach). For many of us, physics has always been a thing of mystery and complexity. K. C. Cole, an award-winning science writer, specializes in making its wonders accessible to the everyday reader. This book uses lively prose, metaphors, and anecdotes to allow us to comprehend the nuances of physics: gravity and light, color and shape, quarks and quasars, particles and stars, force and strength. It also shows us how the physical world is so deeply intertwined with the ways we think about culture, poetry, and philosophy, and explores the workings of such legendary scientific minds as Richard Feynman, Victor Weisskopf, brothers Frank Oppenheimer and J. Robert Oppenheimer, Philip Morrison, Vera Kistiakowsky, and Stephen Jay Gould. “An exemplary science writer . . . For readers without scientific background, Cole gracefully introduces relativity, quantum theory, optics, astrophysics, and other significant disciplines, never getting bogged down in unnecessary explanation. Thus, you may not learn all about thermodynamics from reading her chapter on it, but you will learn enough to think seriously about the entropy in your own life. Cole sprinkles her text with comments from famous scientists—‘Space is blue, and birds fly in it,’ said Heisenberg, and Faraday said, ‘Nothing is too wonderful to be true’—that are not only delightful in themselves but perfectly suited to her own text. No review of Cole’s book could be too wonderful to be true.” —Booklist

Something Incredibly Wonderful Happens

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022600936X
Size: 17.59 MB
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How do we reclaim our innate enchantment with the world? And how can we turn our natural curiosity into a deep, abiding love for knowledge? Frank Oppenheimer, the younger brother of the physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, was captivated by these questions, and used his own intellectual inquisitiveness to found the Exploratorium, a powerfully influential museum of human awareness in San Francisco, that encourages play, creativity, and discovery—all in the name of understanding. In this elegant biography, K. C. Cole investigates the man behind the museum with sharp insight and deep sympathy. The Oppenheimers were a family with great wealth and education, and Frank, like his older brother, pursued a career in physics. But while Robert was unceasingly ambitious, and eventually came to be known for his work on the atomic bomb, Frank’s path as a scientist was much less conventional. His brief fling with the Communist Party cost him his position at the University of Minnesota, and he subsequently spent a decade ranching in Colorado before returning to teaching. Once back in the lab, however, Frank found himself moved to create something to make the world meaningful after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He was inspired by European science museums, and he developed a dream of teaching Americans about science through participatory museums. Thus was born the magical world of the Exploratorium, forever revolutionizing not only the way we experience museums, but also science education for years to come. Cole has brought this charismatic and dynamic figure to life with vibrant prose and rich insight into Oppenheimer as both a scientist and an individual.

Euclid In The Rainforest

Author: Joseph Mazur
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101664878
Size: 79.57 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
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Like Douglas Hofstadter’s Gödel, Escher, Bach, and David Berlinski’s A Tour of the Calculus, Euclid in the Rainforest combines the literary with the mathematical to explore logic—the one indispensable tool in man’s quest to understand the world. Underpinning both math and science, it is the foundation of every major advancement in knowledge since the time of the ancient Greeks. Through adventure stories and historical narratives populated with a rich and quirky cast of characters, Mazur artfully reveals the less-than-airtight nature of logic and the muddled relationship between math and the real world. Ultimately, Mazur argues, logical reasoning is not purely robotic. At its most basic level, it is a creative process guided by our intuitions and beliefs about the world.

Sympathetic Vibrations

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: Bantam Dell Pub Group
ISBN: 9780553342345
Size: 62.48 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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An introduction to physics examines the theoretical principles developed by Galileo, Bohr, Newton, and other great physicists and explains how the laws of physics pervade all facets of everyday human life

The Jazz Of Physics

Author: Stephon Alexander
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465098509
Size: 28.62 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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More than fifty years ago, John Coltrane drew the twelve musical notes in a circle and connected them by straight lines, forming a five-pointed star. Inspired by Einstein, Coltrane put physics and geometry at the core of his music. Physicist and jazz musician Stephon Alexander follows suit, using jazz to answer physics' most vexing questions about the past and future of the universe. Following the great minds that first drew the links between music and physics-a list including Pythagoras, Kepler, Newton, Einstein, and Rakim-The Jazz of Physics reveals that the ancient poetic idea of the Music of the Spheres," taken seriously, clarifies confounding issues in physics. The Jazz of Physics will fascinate and inspire anyone interested in the mysteries of our universe, music, and life itself.

My Brain Is Open

Author: Bruce Schechter
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 0684859807
Size: 25.55 MB
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Traces the eccentric life of legendary mathematician Paul Erdos, a wandering genius who fled his native Hungary during the Holocaust and helped devise the mathematical basis of computer science.

Mind Over Matter

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0547973128
Size: 50.28 MB
Format: PDF
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“Ruminations on every scientific subject over the sun—and plenty beyond it”—from the bestselling author of The Universe and the Teacup (The Boston Globe). A San Jose Mercury News Best Book of the Year A recipient of the American Institute of Physics Award for Best Science Writer, K. C. Cole offers a wide-ranging collection of essays about the nature of nature, the universals in the universe, and the messy playfulness of great science. In witty and fresh short takes, she explores some of the world’s most intriguing scientific subjects—from particle physics to cosmology to mathematics and astronomy—and introduces a few of science’s great minds. Revealing the universe to be elegant, intriguing, and, above all, relevant to our everyday lives, this book is “an absolute delight [that] belongs on the bedside bookshelf of every science enthusiast” (San Jose Mercury News). “Cole seeks the wondrous in the stuff we mistake for just ordinary.” —Publishers Weekly K. C. Cole, the Los Angeles Times science writer and columnist, always has a fresh take on cutting-edge scientific discoveries, which she makes both understandable and very human. Reporting on physics, cosmology, mathematics, astronomy, and more, Cole's essays, culled from her popular Mind Over Matter columns, reveal the universe as simple, constant, and complex—and wholly relevant to politics, art, and every dimension of human life.

The Hole In The Universe

Author: K. C. Cole
Publisher: HMH
ISBN: 0544079558
Size: 80.43 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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“A compelling, enjoyable, and widely accessible exploration of one of the most fundamental scientific issues of our age” (Brian Greene, author of The Elegant Universe). In The Hole in the Universe, an award-winning science writer “provides an illuminating slant on physics and mathematics by exploring the concept of nothing” (Scientific American). Welcome to the world of cutting-edge math, physics, and neuroscience, where the search for the ultimate vacuum, the point of nothingness, the ground zero of theory, has rendered the universe deep, rich, and juicy. Every time scientists and mathematicians think they have reached the ultimate void, something new appears: a black hole, an undulating string, an additional dimension of space or time, repulsive anti-gravity, universes that breed like bunnies. Cole’s exploration at the edge of everything is “as playfully entertaining as it is informative” (San Jose Mercury News). “A strong and sometimes mind-blowing introduction to the edges of modern physics.” —Salon.com “Comprising an expansive set of topics from the history of numbers to string theory, the big bang, even Zen, the book’s chapters are broken into bite-sized portions that allow the author to revel in the puns and awkwardness that comes with trying to describe a concept that no one has fully grasped. It is an amorphous, flowing, mind-bending discussion, written in rich, graceful prose. As clear and accessible as Hawking’s A Brief History of Time, this work deserves wide circulation, not just among science buffs.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review “Here we have the definitive book about nothing, and who would think that nothing could be so interesting . . . not only accessible but compelling reading.” —St. Louis Post-Dispatch