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Before the Big Bang: The Origins of the Universe Paperback – January 5, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A brilliantly simple model of how we came to be. ...A wonderful book... a memoir and a complete history of physics." -- The Jerusalem Post

"My head is spinning...mind-boggling. Sternglass has marched to the beat of an entirely different drum." -- New Scientist

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 294 pages
  • Publisher: Four Walls Eight Windows (January 5, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568581890
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568581897
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,836,771 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Steve Gibson on July 23, 1998
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I don't recall what inspired me to purchase this book. Probably just idle curiosity about what might have happened before the "Big Bang."
Little did I know that this book would change my entire view of the fabric of life and existence.
Written as a personal history of the author's own quest for a SIMPLE and INTUITIVE explanation of the existence and initial creation of all the matter in the universe, this modest book guides the intelligent lay reader through more than a century of experimentation and research.
You will find yourself understanding sub-atomic particle physics in a visual way that you would have never believed before. I'm only half way through the book, and already I know that the moment I complete it I'll read it again, just to better absorb this incredible book's entirety.
I can't possibly overstate the simplicity and clarity with which this author writes of his own involvement in the search for the basis of material existence and crea! tion, nor of his modesty as he so painstakingly gives credit to every other researcher in the field.
If you purchase this book, and read it, you'll come away with a grasp of sub-atomic physics like you'd never have believed you could attain.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 9, 1999
Format: Hardcover
What was remarkable about the book was that it came to several conclusions at current odds with scientific thinking, including a classical explanation for quantum mechanics, something that Einstein struggled with his entire career. The author was able to meet the great Einstein on several occassions, but was never able to present this classical explanation to him. Other profound revelations include: a rotating universe (you might ask in relation to what?); the existence of the primeval atom from which everything evolved in the Big Bang after remaining quiescent (and rotating once)over 17 trillion years; and the uniqueness of the electron/positron as the two fundamental particles out of which everything is made. Sternglass is able to take the electron and the anti-matter electron (the positron) and derive all fundamental particles from their various combinations in a logical way.
All in all a very clever, and by Occam's Razor, believable exposition of how modern physical theory may be wrong about a lot of things, including non-determinism in qauntum mechanics.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Matthew J. Arndt on October 1, 2001
Format: Hardcover
My praise is unqualified for _Before the Big Bang_. It answers so many previously unanswered questions about the universe, unifies all the physical forces, and unifies all forms of matter and energy, with jaw-dropping elegance and beauty. A few of its many highlights:
Matter is revealed to be made up of pairs of rotating electrons and positrons. Electrons, positrons, and photons are revealed to be forms of vortexs in the ether, so that matter and energy are visually comprehensible as two forms of the same thing, as required by Einstein's E=mc2. The properties of the vortexs also account for the properties of theoretical superstrings. In this way, the gulf between classical and quantum physics evaporates.
Protons are revealed to be made up of four electron-positron pairs and a positron, interacting in such a way (illustrated on p. 250) as to account for the properties of theoretical quarks (which have never been observed individually), the strong force, and the unequaled stability of protons. Neutrons and the weak force are similarly explained.
Electron-positron pairs allow for more massive and yet longer-lived particles than any other known form of matter. This, astonishingly, allows a single electron-positron pair to encompass the mass/energy of the entire universe. This in turn makes it unnecessary to stipulate a problematic infinitely dense singularity and a beginning of time at the big bang.
All cosmologicals structures, from the universe down to planets, are revealed to be rotating systems equally spaced on logarithmic scales of both mass and size. This structure, unaccountable by any previous model, is revealed to have been preexistent in the extraordinarily but finitely dense seed of matter at the big bang.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 25, 2001
Format: Paperback
...because I think BEFORE THE BIG BANG is seriously intriguing, definitely worth a read. If it turns out to be wrong, it will not be because of any obvious errors, only because much of what we "know" about cosmology is merely elegant speculation, and Sternglass MAY be proven wrong in the fullness of time. (Interesting he gets attacked so vehemently. I read he also was surrounded by controversy at the San Francisco Book Fair, where he spoke -- apparently one physicist at U.Cal. didn't even want to let him on the stage at all, never mind disagreeing with him! Reminds me of other famous pioneering astronomers/astrophysicists of recent and ancient history...) I can't resist answering reviewer Frank Paris's technical comments, because I don't like to see a hardworking scientist slammed:
1. Paris questions how the primordial particle can revolve --"relative to what?" This question is answered on pages 204 and 208-9, where Sternglass describes the ideas of Gödel, Ozsvath and Schücking, according to which rotation relative to the space-time continuum of Einstein, or his version of Newton's and Descartes' ether, is described. These scientists showed that a rotating universe is theoretically possible, so that there can in fact be a rotating primeval atom.
2. Paris says that Sternglass imagines "the primitive particles making up a proton to be a rotating electron/positron pair. So it should be chargeless." But if you actually read the discussion of the proton model on pages 249-251 and see the diagram showing its structure on page 250, you understand that the proton not only contains four electron-positron pairs but also a positron, so that it is positively charged.
Sternglass has guts and is not crazy.
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