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The New Physics

4.8 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0521438315
ISBN-10: 0521438314
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Editorial Reviews

Review

'The very people who are busy creating the new physics carry the reader out to the growing edge of modern science. It is an exciting trip. The New Physics is an ambitious attempt to make the frontiers of this science accessible to a wider audience. This book succeeds admirably in this goal. I know of no better one-volume guide to the edges of modern physics.' Nick Herbert, New Scientist

'This is an attractively presented book, but it is one to be read and thought about rather than merely looked at. Non-scientists will get a good sense of some of the new ideas, and scientists - physicists included - can learn how very far physics has extended its dominion.' J. H. Mulvey, Nature

' ... a first-class book, conveying a real sense of current research.' Observatory

Book Description

Fifteen years on from the highly praised The New Physics, new scientific advances have led to a dramatic reappraisal of our understanding of the world around us, and made a significant impact on our lifestyle. Underpinning all other branches of science, physics affects the way we live our lives and ultimately how life itself functions. This book covers the key frontiers in modern-day physics, exploring our universe--from the particles inside an atom to the stars that make up a galaxy, from brain research to the latest advances in computing.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 526 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (August 28, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521438314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521438315
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.2 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,631,858 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I thoght this was one of the best books on physics that I had ever read. As an educated layman (MS in Elec Eng) I have experienced some frustration with most "popular" tours of science. This book balanced sufficient (mathematical) detail to make me feel I had grasped some of the fundamentals with enough wonderfully clear conceptual explanation to ensure that I understood the whole. A must-read for anyone who has felt short-changed by "simple" explanations of the latest developments in our understanding of the universe
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Format: Paperback
Now that 15 years have passed since this book came out, the physics it describes is not quite so new. But it is still a very nice introduction to some of the more interesting parts of physics. Not every exciting aspect of physics is covered. But everything that is covered is a stimulating area in which plenty of noteworthy things are happening.

There's a nice section by Clifford Will on the renaissance of general relativity. And he makes the point that cosmologists have long been plagued by having their predicted ages of the Universe come out just a teeny bit less than the ages of (pick one) the Earth or the Milky Way Galaxy. Alan Guth and Paul Steinhardt have a nice article on the inflationary universe. And Stephen Hawking has some nice words about the question of whether spacetime has a boundary. Chris Isham discusses quantum gravity. All these are subjects that get us in the proper mood for the chapter I liked best, by Malcolm Longair, on the new astrophysics. This 115-page article is a wonderful introduction to the field.

Now that we've looked at something big (the universe), we study some systems that appear self-organized. We start with an article by David Thouless on condensed matter in less than three dimensions. I liked this, he even discussed "third sound" in superfluid helium, something which as an "acoustics person" I find fascinating. And there's another good article on low temperature physics, by Anthony Leggett. The next chapter in the self-organization section is by Peter Knight, on quantum optics (lasers); he has a good discussion of the generation of ultrashort optical pulses. And there is a chapter about phase transitions and critical point phenomena by Alastair Bruce and David Wallace.
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Format: Paperback
While not exactly new, published 1989, it is written at the transitional node of the "pop" physics world excitment over quantum physics which is all smoke and mirrors - The New Physics is real foundational physics and excellent refresher for understanding the physics of our current environmental issues
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Format: Paperback
This edited volume by the illustrative Paul Davies, is a "sampling of" rather than a "summing up" of the state of physics at the end of the last decade. Its cast of contributors and topics is equally illustrative.

It offers a balanced attack on the third frontier of physics with a mixture of both gusto and humility, admitting that there is a great deal more work yet to be done to pull together disparate and often far-flung pieces, but not shying away from the need to continue basic research and experimentation.

Mercifully, we are spared some of the daunting mathematics that would have otherwise been required to decipher this material. The level presented here is exactly adequate for a college-trained non-Scientist to grasp. Altogether it is a beautifully put together volume, full of experimental details and well-worth the price, which is not cheap.

Five stars
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