First You Build a Cloud: And Other Reflections on Physics as a Way of Life

K. Thus, you may not learn all about thermodynamics from reading her chapter on it, but you will learn enough to think seriously about the entropy in your own life. This book uses lively prose, and anecdotes to allow us to comprehend the nuances of physics: gravity and light, quarks and quasars, particles and stars, metaphors, color and shape, force and strength.

No review of cole’s book could be too wonderful to be true. Booklist . For many of us, physics has always been a thing of mystery and complexity. Robert oppenheimer, vera Kistiakowsky, Philip Morrison, and Stephen Jay Gould. C. This clearly written and compelling look at physics and physicists offers “thousands of new ways to see our daily world more richly” Douglas Hofstadter, author of Gödel, Escher, Bach.

An exemplary science writer .  .  . For readers without scientific background, Cole gracefully introduces relativity, and other significant disciplines, astrophysics, optics, quantum theory, never getting bogged down in unnecessary explanation. Cole, an award-winning science writer, specializes in making its wonders accessible to the everyday reader.

Cole sprinkles her text with comments from famous scientists—‘space is blue, and Faraday said, and birds fly in it, ’ said Heisenberg, ‘Nothing is too wonderful to be true’—that are not only delightful in themselves but perfectly suited to her own text.

Mind Over Matter: Conversations with the Cosmos

Revealing the universe to be elegant, relevant to our everyday lives, intriguing, and, above all, this book is “an absolute delight that belongs on the bedside bookshelf of every science enthusiast” San Jose Mercury News. A san jose mercury news best book of the year   A recipient of the American Institute of Physics Award for Best Science Writer, K.

C. Ruminations on every scientific subject over the sun—and plenty beyond it”—from the bestselling author of The Universe and the Teacup The Boston Globe. Cole, the los angeles times science writer and columnist, always has a fresh take on cutting-edge scientific discoveries, which she makes both understandable and very human.

Reporting on physics, cosmology, art, constant, reveal the universe as simple, astronomy, mathematics, culled from her popular Mind Over Matter columns, and complex—and wholly relevant to politics, Cole's essays, and more, and every dimension of human life. In witty and fresh short takes, she explores some of the world’s most intriguing scientific subjects—from particle physics to cosmology to mathematics and astronomy—and introduces a few of science’s great minds.

C. Cole offers a wide-ranging collection of essays about the nature of nature, the universals in the universe, and the messy playfulness of great science. Cole seeks the wondrous in the stuff we mistake for just ordinary. Publishers Weekly K.

The Universe and the Teacup: The Mathematics of Truth and Beauty

She so obviously likes mathematics, the reader can't help liking it too. Filled with “a thousand fascinating facts and shrewd observations Martin Gardner, from relativity to rainbows, this book demonstrates how the truth and beauty of everything, Los Angeles Times, is all in the numbers.  . Cole writes clearly, simply and vividly, ” noted The New York Times.

Cole follows up her paean to the power of physics, Sympathetic Vibrations, with this engaging and accessible guide to the might and majesty of mathematics. Brimming with trivia stressing the importance of math throughout history, this is a book both math nerds and the “innumerate” everyday person can enjoy in equal measure.

From the acclaimed los angeles Times science writer, witty, a wise, and elegant study of how math provides practical solutions to everyday problems. The universe and the teacup uses relatable examples, humorous prose, and whimsical line drawings to demonstrate math’s ability to “translate the complexity of the world into manageable patterns.

Cole shows how mathematical concepts illuminate everything from human risk-taking behavior to astronomical investigation, game theory to logic problems—not to mention the very structure of the universe itself. Are the secrets of the universe written in words—or is it all about the digits? K. C.

The Hole in the Universe: How Scientists Peered over the Edge of Emptiness and Found Everything Harvest Book

Every time scientists and mathematicians think they have reached the ultimate void, repulsive anti-gravity, an undulating string, something new appears: a black hole, an additional dimension of space or time, universes that breed like bunnies. In the hole in the universe, an award-winning science writer “provides an illuminating slant on physics and mathematics by exploring the concept of nothing” Scientific American.

A strong and sometimes mind-blowing introduction to the edges of modern physics. Salon. Com   “comprising an expansive set of topics from the history of numbers to string theory, even Zen, the big bang, the book’s chapters are broken into bite-sized portions that allow the author to revel in the puns and awkwardness that comes with trying to describe a concept that no one has fully grasped.

It is an amorphous, mind-bending discussion, flowing, written in rich, graceful prose. As clear and accessible as hawking’s A Brief History of Time, this work deserves wide circulation, not just among science buffs. Publishers weekly, starred review   “Here we have the definitive book about nothing, and who would think that nothing could be so interesting .

 .  . Not only accessible but compelling reading. St.

Time Travel in Einstein's Universe: The Physical Possibilities of Travel Through Time

It has mostly been dismissed as an impossibility in the world of physics; yet theories posited by Einstein, and advanced by scientists including Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne, suggest that the phenomenon could actually occur. A princeton astrophysicist explores whether journeying to the past or future is scientifically possible in this “intriguing” volume Neil deGrasse Tyson.

This look at the surprising facts behind the science fiction of time travel “deserves the attention of anyone wanting wider intellectual horizons” Booklist. It was H. G. Impressively clear language. Wells who coined the term “time machine”—but the concept of time travel, both forward and backward, has always provoked fascination and yearning.

Practical tips for chrononauts on their options for travel and the contingencies to prepare for make everything sound bizarrely plausible. Gott clearly enjoys his subject and his excitement and humor are contagious; this book is a delight to read. Publishers Weekly. Richard gott, time, a professor who has written on the subject for Scientific American, and other publications, describes how travel to the future is not only possible but has already happened—and contemplates whether travel to the past is also conceivable.

Building on these ideas, J.

The Good Society: The Human Agenda

Carefully reasoned .  .  . The legendary economist explains how a nation can remain both compassionate and fiscally sound, with “common sense raised to the level of genius” The New Yorker. Arguing that it is in the best interest of the united States to avoid excessive wealth and income inequality, and to safeguard the well-being of its citizens, he explores how the goal of a good society can be achieved in an economically feasible way.

The pragmatically liberal Galbraith argues that both socialism and complete surrender to market forces are irrelevant as guides to public action. Publishers Weekly. Touching on topics from regulation, and deficits to education, and the military, bureaucracy, inflation, the environment, Galbraith avoids purely partisan or rigid ideological politics—instead addressing practical problems with logic and well-thought-out principles.

This compact, eloquent book offers a blueprint for a workable national agenda that allows for human weakness without compromising a humane culture.

Nothing: Surprising Insights Everywhere from Zero to Oblivion

It turns out that nothing is as curious or as enlightening as nothingness itself. What is nothing? where can it be found? the writers of the world’s top-selling science magazine investigate—from the big bang, to superconductors, hypnosis, dark energy, and the void, vestigial organs, and the placebo effect.

Prepare to be amazed at how much more there is to nothing than you ever realized. And they discover that understanding nothing may be the key to understanding everything: what came before the big bang—and will our universe end?How might cooling matter down almost to absolute zero help solve our energy crisis?How can someone suffer from a false diagnosis as though it were true?Does nothingness even exist if squeezing a perfect vacuum somehow creates light?Why is it unfair to accuse sloths—animals who do nothing—of being lazy?And more! Contributors Paul Davies, and Ian Stewart, along with two former editors of Nature and sixteen other leading writers and scientists, Jo Marchant, marshal up-to-the-minute research to make one of the most perplexing realms in science dazzlingly clear.

The writers behind new scientist explore the baffling concept of nothingness from the fringes of the universe to our minds’ inner workings.

The Goldilocks Enigma: Why Is the Universe Just Right for Life?

Whether he’s elucidating dark matter or dark energy, Davies brings the leading edge of science into sharp focus, M-theory or the multiverse, provoking us to think about the cosmos and our place within it in new and thrilling ways. If this is true, consciousness—aren’t just incidental byproducts of nature, ultimately, then life—and, but central players in the evolution of the universe.

While this “multiverse” theory is compelling, it has bizarre implications, such as the existence of infinite copies of each of us and Matrix-like simulated universes. Here he tackles all the “big questions, ” including the biggest of them all: why does the universe seem so well adapted for life?   In his characteristically clear and elegant style, Davies shows how recent scientific discoveries point to a perplexing fact: many different aspects of the cosmos, from the properties of the humble carbon atom to the speed of light, seem tailor-made to produce life.

. Our universe is bio-friendly by accident—we just happened to win the cosmic jackpot. An acclaimed physicist and cosmologist considers the multiverse and more: “Very readable indeed .  .  . This is doctor Who, but for real. Theguardianthe goldilocks enigma is Paul Davies’s eagerly awaited return to cosmology, the successor to his critically acclaimed bestseller The Mind of God.

Words Gone Wild: Fun and Games for Language Lovers

A treasury for anyone who enjoys puns, puzzles, witty anagrams, tongue-twisters, and all kinds of wordplay!   This enlightening and entertaining guide to humorous language is chock-full of comical spoonerisms, palindromes, droll malapropisms, limericks, and more. Occasionally bawdy and always playful, Words Gone Wild is a fun-filled volume for anyone who loves language—and laughter.

 . It also provides a bit of historical and etymological education, Shakespeare, with puns from Greek dramatists, the Bible, George S. Kaufman, and Groucho Marx.

Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder

This is the book dawkins was meant to write: A brilliant assessment of what science is and isn’t, a tribute to science not because it is useful but because it is uplifting. A love letter to science, an attempt to counter the perception that science is cold and devoid of aesthetic sensibility .  .  . Did sir isaac newton “unweave the rainbow” by reducing it to its prismatic colors, in other words, diminish beauty? Far from it, as John Keats contended? Did he, says acclaimed scientist Richard Dawkins; Newton’s unweaving is the key too much of modern astronomy and to the breathtaking poetry of modern cosmology.

Mysteries don’t lose their poetry because they are solved: the solution often is more beautiful than the puzzle, uncovering deeper mysteries. With the wit, dawkins takes up the most important and compelling topics in modern science, and spellbinding prose that have made him a bestselling author, from astronomy and genetics to language and virtual reality, insight, combining them in a landmark statement of the human appetite for wonder.

Rich with metaphor, colorful examples, wry humor, and unexpected connections, passionate arguments, Dawkins’ prose can be mesmerizing. San francisco chronicle   “Brilliance and wit. The new Yorker. If any recent writing about science is poetic, it is this” The Wall Street Journal. From the new york times–bestselling author of Science in the Soul.

Zeno and the Tortoise: How to Think Like a Philosopher

An academic arsenal of philosophical weapons that are keen for slicing and stabbing through the slippery profoundities of day-to-day decision-making and right into the middle of dinner-party conversations of which you would have otherwise been left out. Philosophy Now. Written in twenty-five short chapters, each readable during the journey to work, Zeno and the Tortoise is the ideal course in intellectual self-defense.

For those who don’t know the difference between lucretius’s spear and Hume’s fork, Zeno and the Tortoise explains not just who each philosopher was and what he thought, but exactly how he came to think in the way he did. Along the way, there are fascinating biographical snippets about the philosophers themselves: the story of Thales falling down a well while studying the stars, and of Socrates being told by a face-reader that his was the face of a monster who was capable of any crime.

Acute, but always authoritative, often irreverent, this is a unique introduction to the ideas that have shaped us all. In a witty and engaging style that incorporates everything from sting to cell phones to Bill Gates, Rousseau’s social contract, Fearn demystifies the ways of thought that have shaped and inspired humanity—among many others, and, Bentham’s theory of utilitarianism, the Socratic method, Descartes’s use of doubt, of course, the concept of common sense.

A large, crafty bag of brilliant tools .  .  . From the author of the latest answers to the Oldest Questions, a philosophical guide that’s “great for sounding cleverer than you really are” Men’s Health.