Synopses & Reviews
This book is an introduction to the arrow of time in thermodynamics and cosmology, and develops a new quantum measurement theory in which the foregoing concepts play an essential role. The first chapter is an overview and "route map" and is followed by an exposition of irreversibility, the expansion of the universe and other arrows of time. The author examines the thesis that the thermodynamic arrow follows the cosmological one, and in doing so extends traditional statistical mechanics. The second part of the book presents a new theory of quantum measurement and possible experimental tests. This theory incorporates the extended statistical mechanics in an essential way. The last chapter discusses open experimental and theoretical issues. Written in a lively and accessible style, the text is liberally sprinkled with exercises. Each chapter ends with a resources section that includes notes, further reading, and technical appendices. This book will fascinate graduate students in physics, cosmology, and the philosophy of physics.
Review
"The author has obviously enjoyed writing this thought-provoking work, and I enjoyed reading it. I can certainly recommend it to anyone interested in the problem as a worthwhile contribution. Furthermore, the author has written for a wide readership, and I can strongly recommend the book to the general physicist as an excellent way of becoming interested in the problem." David Pegg, Physics World"...his book is essential reading for anyone with a serious interest in either topic." Huw Price, Nature"...fascinating book" Journal of Statistical Physics"...this very readable book, written in a witty and accessible style, provides fresh insights on statistical mechanics and quantum theory." Contemporary Physics
Synopsis
An introduction to the arrow of time and a new, related, theory of quantum measurement.
Synopsis
An introduction to the arrow of time in thermodynamics and cosmology, and a new, related theory of quantum measurement. Theoretical and experimental issues in both areas are considered. Written in a lively and accessible style, the text is liberally sprinkled with exercises, notes, and references/further reading.
Table of Contents
Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Irreversibility; 3. Arrows of time; 4. Correlating arrows of time; 5. Two-time boundary conditions; 6. Quantum measurements: cats, clouds and everything else; 7. Existence of special states; 8. Selection of special states; 9. Abundance of special states; 10. Experimental tests; 11. Conclusions and outlook.