The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the UniverseFrom one of our greatest living scientists, a magnificent book that provides, for the serious lay reader, the most comprehensive and sophisticated account we have yet had of the physical universe and the essentials of its underlying mathematical theory. Since the earliest efforts of the ancient Greeks to find order amid the chaos around us, there has been continual accelerated progress toward understanding the laws that govern our universe. And the particularly important advances made by means of the revolutionary theories of relativity and quantum mechanics have deeply altered our vision of the cosmos and provided us with models of unprecedented accuracy. What Roger Penrose so brilliantly accomplishes in this book is threefold. First, he gives us an overall narrative description of our present understanding of the universe and its physical behaviors–from the unseeable, minuscule movement of the subatomic particle to the journeys of the planets and the stars in the vastness of time and space. Second, he evokes the extraordinary beauty that lies in the mysterious and profound relationships between these physical behaviors and the subtle mathematical ideas that explain and interpret them. Third, Penrose comes to the arresting conclusion–as he explores the compatibility of the two grand classic theories of modern physics–that Einstein’s general theory of relativity stands firm while quantum theory, as presently constituted, still needs refashioning. Along the way, he talks about a wealth of issues, controversies, and phenomena; about the roles of various kinds of numbers in physics, ideas of calculus and modern geometry, visions of infinity, the big bang, black holes, the profound challenge of the second law of thermodynamics, string and M theory, loop quantum gravity, twistors, and educated guesses about science in the near future. In The Road to Reality he has given us a work of enormous scope, intention, and achievement–a complete and essential work of science 
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LibraryThing Review
User Review  amarcobio  LibraryThingPopular books explain complex concepts in simple words. Technical books provide theoretical justification for scientific concepts. In my modest opinion, this book pretends to be a popular and a ... Read full review
LibraryThing Review
User Review  HadriantheBlind  LibraryThingA feast for any physicist, or anyone who wants to learn the depth and beauty of physics, etc. as we know it. Not dumbed down at all. Throws every subject imaginable at you. If you can understand it ... Read full review
Contents
Prologue  1 
The roots of science  7 
An ancient theorem and a modern question  25 
Copyright  
34 other sections not shown
Other editions  View all
The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe Roger Penrose No preview available  2016 
The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe Roger Penrose No preview available  2007 
Common terms and phrases
actually algebra angle antiparticle appropriate basic Big Bang black hole bosons bundle Chapter classical complex numbers complex plane components consider constant coordinate curvature curve defined density matrix described dimensions Dirac direction eigenvalue Einstein's electromagnetic electron element energy entropy equation Euclidean example expression fact Feynman Feynman graphs finite formula function fundamental geometry gravitational Hamiltonian holomorphic hyperbolic hyperbolic geometry idea integral Lagrangian linear lines loop manifold mass mathematical measurement metric Minkowski Minkowski space natural numbers normal notation notion operator ordinary original orthogonal pair particle particular Penrose photon physical picture positive quantity quantum mechanics quantum superposition quantum theory real numbers Recall referred region represented Riemann sphere rotation scalar Schrodinger Section simply singularity spacetime spatial spin spin networks spinor string theory structure superposition supersymmetry symmetry tangent tensor theorem transformation twistor twistor theory unit circle universe vector field vector space wavefunction zero