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Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps, and the Tenth Dimension [Paperback]

by Michio Kaku
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (231 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 1995 0192861891 978-0192861894 First paperback edit
Already thoroughly familiar to the seasoned science fiction fan, Hyperspace is that realm which enables a spaceship captain to take his ship on a physics-defying shortcut (or "wormhole") to the outer shores of the Galaxy in less time than it takes a 747 to fly from New York to Tokyo. But in the past few years, physicists on the cutting edge of science have found that a 10-dimensional Hyperspace may actually exist, albeit at a scale almost too small to comprehend, smaller even than a quark; and that in spite of its tiny size, it may be the basis on which all the forces of nature will be united. This is the first book for a general audience on one of the latest, most exciting developments in modern science. In the past several years, theoretical physicists--the author among them--have discovered that the universe exists not merely in the four spacetime dimensions (3 of space + one of time) with which Einstein made us familiar, but rather as a ten-dimensional Hyperspace. Once the domain of the science fiction writer or the occultist, Hyperspace has recently been shown to be the only kind of space in which the laws of modern physics can be satisfactorily explained. Amazingly enough, many of the phenomena whose explanations have stymied 20th century physicists and cosmologists can now be perfectly clarified by using the ten dimensions of Hyperspace. Most importantly, Einstein's unfulfilled dream, the work on which he spent the last several decades of his life in vain--the unification of all the forces of nature--now sits waiting on the ten-dimensional doorstep of modern theoretical physicists. Michio Kaku--theoretical high-energy physicist, author, radio talkshow host, and nuclear disarmament activist--is one of the pioneers in the field of String Theory, which states that the basic constituents of our universe are not quarks or protons or electrons, but much smaller entities called "strings" or "superstrings", which vibrate--like violin strings--in 10 dimensional Hyperspace, and whose vibrations in different resonances are manifested in the elementary particles. In his book, Kaku takes the reader on a ride through Hyperspace to the edge of physics. On the way he gives crystal clear explanations of such formidable mathematical concepts as non-Euclidean Geometry, Kaluza-Klein Theory, and Supergravity, the everyday tools of the string theorist. Utilizing fascinating and often hilarious anecdotes from history, from art, and from science fiction, Kaku shows us that writers and artists--in addition to scientists--have been fascinated by multidimensional space for over a century. In fact, many of the weird effects created by such famous artists as Dali and Picasso can be explained and more appreciated with an eye on the fourth spatial dimension. Finally, Kaku shows us why the ability to master Hyperspace may be our only salvation from destruction at the end of space-time. This lively yet authoritative book is spiced with many whimsical illustrations in a style reminiscent of the late science writer George Gamow.

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Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps, and the Tenth Dimension + Parallel Worlds: A Journey Through Creation, Higher Dimensions, and the Future of the Cosmos + Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel
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Editorial Reviews Review

How many dimensions do you live in? Three? Maybe that's all your commonsense sense perception perceives, but there is growing and compelling evidence to suggest that we actually live in a universe of ten real dimensions. Kaku has written an extraordinarily lucid and thought-provoking exploration of the theoretical and empirical bases of a ten-dimensional universe and even goes so far as to discuss possible practical implications--such as being able to escape the collapse of the universe. Yikes. Highly Recommended. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


`Kaku's adventurous, tantalizing book should not be penalized for promising more than present technology can test. His intellectual perceptions will thrill lay readers, SF fans and the physics-literate.' Publishers Weekly

`What's all the hype about hyperspace? Most of us have our hands full dealing with just one universe. But Kaku takes us confidently into another dimension, or ten, to see why physicists think that universes are parallel, plural, and positively fermented with wormholes!' John Barrow, author of Theories of Everything

`he has written one of the best popular accounts of higher physics.' Jim Holt, Wall Street Journal

`Hyperspace is beautifully written, making difficult scientific ideas seem accessible, almost easy. Kaku's journey through the ten dimensions is fascinating.' Danah Zohar, Independent

'Kaku's adventurous, tantalizing book should not be penalized for promising more than present technology can test. His intellectual perceptions will thrill lay readers, SF fans and the physics-literate.' Publishers Weekly

'a venture into time travel and higher dimensional theories' Daily Telegraph

`Absorbing, fluently written' The Independent on Sunday

`Kaku's book covers the most difficult areas of modern physics ... Unusually for a book on these exciting questions, Kaku also gives a real feel for what it is like to work on them.' Focus

`strikingly clear and well constructed ... provides a ... comprehensive selection of exercises at the end of every chapter' John Gribben, New Scientist

Product Details

  • Paperback: 359 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford Univ Pr (T); First paperback edit edition (October 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192861891
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192861894
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (231 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #711,000 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
208 of 214 people found the following review helpful
By Spiff
Hyperspace is a book strongly focused on higher-dimensional space-time theories such as superstring and Kaluza-Klein-type. The 10 dimensional theory promises to vastly simplify the laws of nature and end our view of a three dimension universe. Kaku manages to compile lots of information in a very readable and fascinating book. You will understand how 10-D theories are basically simple and geometric, despite their mathematical complexity (which actually opened up new areas of mathematics).
Higher dimension theories allow us to reduce enormous amounts of information into a concise, elegant fashion that unites the two greatest theories of the 20th century: Quantum Theory and General Relativity.
Michio covers the basics of the theory, and its future implications for the future of physics and science, and even writes a few pages on the debate between the reductionism and holism in nature, and the aesthetic relation among physics, mathematics, religion and philosophy. The book flows very smoothly, never burying the reader under too many technical facts. It introduces higher dimension concepts, its relationship with currently accepted theories and the unification of all forces in ten dimensions.
Part 3 of the book starts getting heavier on astrophysics, covers Wormholes and potential gateways to other universes, black holes, parallel universes, time travel and colliding universes. Never Hollywood material, but the typical Stargate fan will probably still love this part. :-) Part 4 ends the book with thoughts on how mankind would can rule the universe if Hyperspace can be mastered, discussing the fate of the universe and its civilizations. Subjects like Entropy death, escape thru hyperspace and universal colonization are covered. Interesting, but lots of early speculation.
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48 of 52 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beyond the Third Dimension August 7, 2000
Everyone of us were born to comprehend the 3-dimensional world that we live in, and most of us would view time as the forth. In "Hyperspace", Kaku introduces the concept of dimensions beyond the third, and what these dimensions mean to us. Apart from talking about the possibilities of deriving a unified theory of all physical laws in higher dimensions, wormholes were also described in details as to how they could be used for travelling between different dimensions and universes, and more interestingly, how they could be used to travel through time. Most of the concepts were backed by examples and stories (including those of Kaku's childhood memories) which, not only allows the readers to easily grasp them, but also makes them more interesting to follow. However, one may start to wonder how on earth could Kaku's parents allow (and assist) their child to perform such horrific experiments!
This book was written primarily for the general public. Having said this, some moderate background and interests in physics are necessary, but then again you probably wouldn't be reading this review to start with if you weren't interested in "Hyperspace", right?
To sum up, I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who wants to find out more about the higher dimensions. Although there were occasions when I felt that Kaku has gone into too much details on the stories he quoted, which themselves could have been another interesting read if I wasn't told of the endings...
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a good book for contemplating the inifinte December 3, 2002
This is book definitely written for the layperson, but the author does no condescension when explaining complex details to the reader. No deep mathematics, no proofs, just a good book for the average person to enjoy and understand. The best book on the market for understanding the complications of the limitations of the space-time continuum of the world we live in.
Don't confuse "hyperspace" with "hypercube". "Hypercube" is a study in mathematics regarding four dimensions without time, while this book discusses as much in detail about "hyperspace", a study of dimensions up to ten. The book is actually on the higher study of physics, not mathematics, but of course, mathematics is a part of the book, if only on a limited basis.
Very interesting on the string theory, where dimensions of 10 and/or 26 are required. Also, all the competing theories are discussed, including the fact that Einstein himself was uncomfortable with studies beyond the fourth dimension. This is all discussed, very aptly, with a view to have the reader himself put on the physicist's shoes, so to speak, and comprehend creating some of theses theories, along with the rest of the academia bunch.
Diagrams and pictures are included to help the reader visualize some of this, even if it is in a limited way. Very helpful.
Einstein claimed that imagination was more than 90 percent of true scientific inquiry. I wouldn't agree with him entirely, especially in fields such as biology, but for physics study and a good review of the all the theories concerning higher dimensions, I would agree more with Einstein than not. I would even recommend this book to one comtemplating a future serious study in physics or math. I wouldn't be without it.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
By Jeremy
High dimensional theories are really hard to comprehend given that you can't see them but just visualize them mathematically. I think the author has done a great job exposing a non physicist to the world of higher dimensional physics.
Kaku starts the Hyperspace theory (also called Superstring or Supergravity theory) in a chronological fashion. Obviously he talks about Einstein's general relativity and then moves on to the pioneer's in the high dimentional geometry with a broad and very lucid description of Kaluza theory (later to become Kaluza-Klein) and Riemann matrices.
According to Kaku , hyperspace theory tells us before the Big Bang, our cosmos was actually a perfect ten-dimensional universe, a world where interdimensional travel was possible. However, this ten-dimensional universe "cracked" in two, creating two separate universes: a four-and a six- dimensional universe. The universe in which we live was born in that cosmic cataclysm. Our four-dimensional universe expanded explosively, while our twin six-dimensional universe contracted violently, until it shrank to almost infinitesimal size. This would explain the origin of the Big Bang. If correct, this theory demonstrates that the rapid expansion of the universe was just a rather minor aftershock of a much greater cataclysmic event, the cracking of space and time itself. The energy that drives the observed expansion of the universe is then found in the collapse of ten-dimensional space and time. According to this theory, the distant stars and galaxies are receding from us at astronomical speeds because of the original collapse of ten-dimensional space and time.
This is by far the best description of the theory I've read so far in a book. The subject matter does require concentration. Even though personally it is hard for me to come to terms with many aspects of the theory, it is definately a mind opener.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok
Michio reads like he delivers on screen. Pithy and sound-bitey. He know this material though and he is engageing. I liked this one.
Published 3 days ago by rob0bOy
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book
It's a great scientific theorem, good thinking and fascinating to read. I like it. Will probably read it again. cheers
Published 22 days ago by Monday Dakoru
5.0 out of 5 stars Michio Kaku knocks it out of the park!!
What an amazing book. It's a blend of science fact with entertaining references to movies. It covers modern mathematical theories of the 10-Dimension Universe (without being too... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars What a journey!
This is a complex and fascinating book. It will take me awhile to read and digest its content. What a journey it will be!
Published 1 month ago by Patricia A. Martin
4.0 out of 5 stars ONe of my fav authors
Already a fan of Michio I listen to his weekly radio show and try to catch any guest appearances he makes. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Claudia Strasbaugh
5.0 out of 5 stars looks brand new
the spine is not creased at all, nothing is written in it. and it looks brand new from the store. love it :)
Published 2 months ago by shelby
5.0 out of 5 stars I thought it was science fiction... but these things can happen?
Michio Kaku takes the reader through a series of fascinating possibilities that most of us thought were only real on Star Trek. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Julie
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome book. Bought as a gift
The book itself is one of my favorites & worth reading. However the copy I received is underlined & highlighted throughout. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Jack
4.0 out of 5 stars Gateway to the enchanted land of science but caution!
For whatever reason, science becomes a mystery after you graduate from high school (unless you become a science major) and even stranger, its mysteriousness grows as you go further... Read more
Published 4 months ago by sm535
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating!
Rather difficult for non-scientists. I struggled a little with some of the concepts, but it was so well written that i at least understood the basics of each idea. Read more
Published 5 months ago by S. Anderson
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