Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity

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Penguin, Jan 23, 2018 - Science - 288 pages
“The man who makes physics sexy . . . the scientist they’re calling the next Stephen Hawking.” The Times Magazine

From the New York Times–bestselling author of Seven Brief Lessons on PhysicsThe Order of Time, and the forthcoming Helgoland, a closer look at the mind-bending nature of the universe.


What are the elementary ingredients of the world? Do time and space exist? And what exactly is reality? In elegant and accessible prose, theoretical physicist Carlo Rovelli leads us on a wondrous journey from Democritus to Einstein, from Michael Faraday to gravitational waves, and from classical physics to his own work in quantum gravity. As he shows us how the idea of reality has evolved over time, Rovelli offers deeper explanations of the theories he introduced so concisely in Seven Brief Lessons on Physics. Rovelli invites us to imagine a marvelous world where space breaks up into tiny grains, time disappears at the smallest scales, and black holes are waiting to explode—a vast universe still largely undiscovered.
 

Contents

Preface
1
Grains
15
The Classics
41
Part
63
Part Three
143
Part Four
197
A WINDOW ONTO QUANTUM GRAVITY
218
The End of Infinity
230
Information
238
Mystery
258
Copyright

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About the author (2018)

Carlo Rovelli is a theoretical physicist who has made significant contributions to the physics of space and time. He has worked in Italy and the United States and currently directs the quantum gravity research group of the Centre de Physique Théorique in Marseille, France. His books, including Seven Brief Lessons on Physics, The Order of Time, and Helgoland, are international bestsellers that have been translated into more than fifty languages.

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