From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time

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Penguin, Jan 7, 2010 - Science - 448 pages
9 Reviews
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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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DLMorrese - LibraryThing

Ostensibly this book is about time and why it goes only one way. Mostly, it's about entropy, and it's a bit repetitive, and not as elucidating as one might hope. I think it may be intended primarily ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - GlennBell - LibraryThing

The book starts out with an understandable discussion. Toward the end I started to get lost and disinterested. Note: I have a PhD in engineering and taught physics. I appreciate that Sean is an expert in theoretical physics and has written an interesting book. Read full review

Contents

PART ONE TIME EXPERIENCE AND THE UNIVERSE
THE PAST IS PRESENT MEMORY
THE HEAVY HAND OF ENTROPY
THE BEGINNING AND END OF TIME
PART TWO TIME IN EINSTEINS UNIVERSE
TIME IS PERSONAL
TIME IS FLEXIBLE
LOOPING THROUGH TIME
RECURRENT NIGHTMARES
QUANTUM TIME
PART FOUR FROM THE KITCHEN TO THE MULTIVERSE
THE ENDS OF TIME
THE LIFE OF THE UNIVERSE
INFLATION AND THE MULTIVERSE
THE PAST THROUGH TOMORROW
EPILOGUE

PART THREE ENTROPY AND TIMES ARROW
RUNNING TIME BACKWARD
ENTROPY AND DISORDER
INFORMATION AND LIFE
NOTES
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Acknowledgements

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About the author (2010)

SEAN CARROLL is a theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology. He received his PhD in 1993 from Harvard University. Recently, Carroll has worked on the foundations of quantum mechanics, the arrow of time, and the emergence of complexity. He has been awarded prizes and fellowships by the National Science Foundation, NASA, the Sloan Foundation, the Packard Foundation, the American Physical Society, the American Institute of Physics, and the Royal Society of London. His most recent award, in 2014, was from the Freedom from Religion Foundation. Carroll has appeared on The Colbert Report (twice), PBS’sNOVA, and Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman, and he frequently serves as a science consultant for film and television. He has been interviewed by various NPR shows, Scientific American, Wired, and The New York Times. He has given a TED talk on the multiverse that has more than one million views, and he has participated in a number of well-attended public debates concerning material in his new book, including one in New York City in 2014 with Eben Alexander.

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