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Available July 11, 2013
The Universe in the Rearview Mirror: How Hidden Symmetries Shape Realityby Dave Goldberg
Synopses & Reviews
A physicist speeds across space, time and everything in between showing that our elegant universeandmdash;from the Higgs boson to antimatter to the most massive group of galaxiesandmdash;is shaped by hidden symmetries that have driven all our recent discoveries about the universe and all the ones to come.
Why is the sky dark at night? Is it possible to build a shrink-ray gun? If there is antimatter, can there be antipeople? Why are past, present, and future our only options? Are time and space like a butterfly's wings?
No one but Dave Goldberg, the coolest nerd physicist on the planet, could give a hyper drive tour of the universe like this one. Not only does he answer the questions your stoner friends came up with in college, but he also reveals the most profound discoveries of physics with infectious, Carl Saganandndash;like enthusiasm and accessibility.
Goldbergandrsquo;s narrative is populated with giants from the history of physics, and the biggest turns out to be an unsung genius and Nazi holocaust escapee named Emmy Noetherandmdash;the other Einstein. She was unrecognized, even unpaid, throughout most of her career simply because she was a woman. Nevertheless, her theorem relating conservation laws to symmetries is widely regarded to be as important as Einsteinandrsquo;s notion of the speed of light. Einstein himself said she was andldquo;the most significant creative mathematical genius thus far produced since the higher education of women began.andrdquo;
Symmetry is the unsung great idea behind all the big physics of the last one hundred yearsandmdash;and what lies ahead. In this book, Goldberg makes mindbending science not just comprehensible but gripping.and#160; Fasten your seat belt.
A rising star in theoretical physics offers his awesome vision of our universe and beyond, all beginning with a simple question: Why does time move forward?
Time moves forward, not backward—everyone knows you can’t unscramble an egg. In the hands of one of today’s hottest young physicists, that simple fact of breakfast becomes a doorway to understanding the Big Bang, the universe, and other universes, too. In From Eternity to Here, Sean Carroll argues that the arrow of time, pointing resolutely from the past to the future, owes its existence to conditions before the Big Bang itself— a period modern cosmology of which Einstein never dreamed. Increasingly, though, physicists are going out into realms that make the theory of relativity seem like child’s play. Carroll’s scenario is not only elegant, it’s laid out in the same easy-to- understand language that has made his group blog, Cosmic Variance, the most popular physics blog on the Net.
From Eternity to Here uses ideas at the cutting edge of theoretical physics to explore how properties of spacetime before the Big Bang can explain the flow of time we experience in our everyday lives. Carroll suggests that we live in a baby universe, part of a large family of universes in which many of our siblings experience an arrow of time running in the opposite direction. It’s an ambitious, fascinating picture of the universe on an ultra-large scale, one that will captivate fans of popular physics blockbusters like Elegant Universe and A Brief History of Time.
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"An accessible and engaging exploration of the mysteries of time."
-Brian Greene, author of The Elegant Universe
Twenty years ago, Stephen Hawking tried to explain time by understanding the Big Bang. Now, Sean Carroll says we need to be more ambitious. One of the leading theoretical physicists of his generation, Carroll delivers a dazzling and paradigm-shifting theory of time's arrow that embraces subjects from entropy to quantum mechanics to time travel to information theory and the meaning of life.
From Eternity to Here is no less than the next step toward understanding how we came to exist, and a fantastically approachable read that will appeal to a broad audience of armchair physicists, and anyone who ponders the nature of our world.
About the Author
DAVE GOLDBERG, an award-winning professor and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Physics at Drexel University, writes the andldquo;Ask a Physicistandrdquo; column for the popular science site io9.com and blogs at usersguidetotheuniverse.com. He lives in Philadelphia.
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