The Road to Reality is the most important and ambitious work of science for a generation. It provides nothing less than a comprehensive account of the physical universe and the essentials of its underlying mathematical theory. It assumes no particular specialist knowledge on the part of the reader, so that, for example, the early chapters give us the vital mathematical background to the physical theories explored later in the book. Roger Penrose's purpose is to describe as clearly as possible our present understanding of the universe and to convey a feeling for its deep beauty and philosophical implications, as well as its intricate logical interconnections. The Road to Reality is rarely less than challenging, but the book is leavened by vivid descriptive passages, as well as hundreds of hand-drawn diagrams. In a single work of colossal scope one of the world's greatest scientists has given us a complete and unrivalled guide to the glories of the universe that we all inhabit.
Where does the road to reality lie? This fundamental question is addressed in this collection of essays by physicists and philosophers, inspired by the original ideas of Sir Roger Penrose, the English mathematical physicist and philosopher of science. The topics range from black holes and quantum information to the very nature of mathematical cognition itself. *** Librarians: ebook available on ProQuest and EBSCO [Subject: Philosophy, Physics, Mathematics, Cosmology]
Einstein said that the most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible. But was he right? Can the quantum theory of fields and Einstein's general theory of relativity, the two most accurate and successful theories in all of physics, be united into a single quantum theory of gravity? Can quantum and cosmos ever be combined? In The Nature of Space and Time, two of the world’s most famous physicists—Stephen Hawking (A Brief History of Time) and Roger Penrose (The Road to Reality)—debate these questions. The authors outline how their positions have further diverged on a number of key issues, including the spatial geometry of the universe, inflationary versus cyclic theories of the cosmos, and the black-hole information-loss paradox. Though much progress has been made, Hawking and Penrose stress that physicists still have further to go in their quest for a quantum theory of gravity.
What came before the Big Bang? How did the universe begin and must it inevitably end? In this remarkable book Roger Penrose brilliantly illuminates some of the deepest mysteries of the universe. Cycles of Time contains a penetrating analysis of the second law of thermodynamics - according to which the 'randomness' of our world is continually increasing - and a thorough examination of the light-cone geometry of space-time. It combines these two central themes to show how the expected ultimate fate of our accelerating, expanding universe can actually be reinterpreted as the 'big bang' of a new one. Presenting various standard and non-standard cosmological models, discussing black holes in depth as well as taking in the role of the cosmic microwave background along the way, Roger Penrose argues that the Big Bang was not actually the beginning of everything - nor will it signal the end. Original and compelling, Cycles of Time offers new answers to the ultimate questions of life.
What can fashionable ideas, blind faith, or pure fantasy possibly have to do with the scientific quest to understand the universe? Surely, theoretical physicists are immune to mere trends, dogmatic beliefs, or flights of fancy? In fact, acclaimed physicist and bestselling author Roger Penrose argues that researchers working at the extreme frontiers of physics are just as susceptible to these forces as anyone else. In this provocative book, he argues that fashion, faith, and fantasy, while sometimes productive and even essential in physics, may be leading today's researchers astray in three of the field's most important areas—string theory, quantum mechanics, and cosmology. Arguing that string theory has veered away from physical reality by positing six extra hidden dimensions, Penrose cautions that the fashionable nature of a theory can cloud our judgment of its plausibility. In the case of quantum mechanics, its stunning success in explaining the atomic universe has led to an uncritical faith that it must also apply to reasonably massive objects, and Penrose responds by suggesting possible changes in quantum theory. Turning to cosmology, he argues that most of the current fantastical ideas about the origins of the universe cannot be true, but that an even wilder reality may lie behind them. Finally, Penrose describes how fashion, faith, and fantasy have ironically also shaped his own work, from twistor theory, a possible alternative to string theory that is beginning to acquire a fashionable status, to "conformal cyclic cosmology," an idea so fantastic that it could be called "conformal crazy cosmology." The result is an important critique of some of the most significant developments in physics today from one of its most eminent figures.
A witty and addictively readable day-by-day literary companion. At once a love letter to literature and a charming guide to the books most worth reading, A Reader's Book of Days features bite-size accounts of events in the lives of great authors for every day of the year. Here is Marcel Proust starting In Search of Lost Time and Virginia Woolf scribbling in the margin of her own writing, "Is it nonsense, or is it brilliance?" Fictional events that take place within beloved books are also included: the birth of Harry Potter’s enemy Draco Malfoy, the blood-soaked prom in Stephen King’s Carrie. A Reader's Book of Days is filled with memorable and surprising tales from the lives and works of Martin Amis, Jane Austen, James Baldwin, Roberto Bolano, the Brontë sisters, Junot Díaz, Philip K. Dick, Charles Dickens, Joan Didion, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Keats, Hilary Mantel, Haruki Murakami, Flannery O’Connor, Orhan Pamuk, George Plimpton, Marilynne Robinson, W. G. Sebald, Dr. Seuss, Zadie Smith, Susan Sontag, Hunter S. Thompson, Leo Tolstoy, David Foster Wallace, and many more. The book also notes the days on which famous authors were born and died; it includes lists of recommended reading for every month of the year as well as snippets from book reviews as they appeared across literary history; and throughout there are wry illustrations by acclaimed artist Joanna Neborsky. Brimming with nearly 2,000 stories, A Reader's Book of Days will have readers of every stripe reaching for their favorite books and discovering new ones.
Points to a revolution in religious studies and practice beyond the aporia of postmodernism. The focus is on direct discourse that pronounces, reconciles, and communicates, and that is characteristic of theology in oratione recta.