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The Quantum Vacuum: A Scientific and Philosophical Concept, from Electrodynamics to String Theory and the Geometry of the Microscopic World Hardcover – October 28, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-1421402475 ISBN-10: 1421402475 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews

Review

This book explores many current ideas about the vacuum, a central concept in modern physics... An interesting approach to collecting some of the most profound ideas scientists have developed about the physical world in modern times.

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About the Author

Luciano Boi is a professor of geometry and scientific theorization at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Centre de mathématiques, Paris.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press; 1 edition (October 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1421402475
  • ISBN-13: 978-1421402475
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,083,015 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 9 people found the following review helpful By PHILIP A. STAHL on April 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover
In my book, 'Dialectical Atheism', there is a record of something like 31 different debates in the media and online between myself and theist opponents. In nearly half of those debates the question of cosmic origins surfaced at least once and often in more than one form.

Now, when I debate such issues I like to have access to the full "arsenal" of physics or scientific knowledge to deal with my adversaries. In nearly all cases pertaining to aspects of cosmic origin, this meant reference to the cosmos originating via a quantum spontaneous fluctuation, or more specifically via quantum tunnelling. It can also introduce the negative energy basis of the quantum vacuum.

Of course, the problem was that none of my opponents were able to deal with this, hence tended to fall back on an archiac form of rigid, Boolean-based causal argument leading to the belief the cosmos had to have been "created". Most such creationist arguments appeal to a subjectively perceived evidence of "design" in the universe as an argument for the existence of a special divine creator. The ultimate false analogy (from history) is the classic one invoked by William Paley that "just as a watch must have a watchmaker, so the Universe must have a Creator".

The viewpoint of Science in general, and modern physics in particular, is totally opposed to this. This opposition has arisen not merely from logical arguments, but from experiments and observations in quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics and cosmology. In the light of these advances, Paley's (not to mention ID's) deficiencies are now evident.(At least to non-theists).

Anyway, this is where Boi's excellent book comes in, for it is not only an exercise in physics but also enlightening philosophy.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Samuel Nesbitt on January 25, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Thorough and honest, without the pseudo science often associated with this subject. Various theories are presented with the pros and cons of each.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By An enthusiast on January 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is probably very wonderful for those who can access this very very difficult topic. ii would recommend cycles of time by penrose to be read before this book is even approached. Penrose's book is much more readable.
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