Monday, December 04, 2006

Gushing Over Greene

I have been reading Brian Greene’s The Fabric of the Cosmos, a masterful exposition of the state of modern physics. I had read his The Elegant Universe several years ago and found it a masterful exposition of string theory. I figured The Fabric of the Cosmos was a sequel and could not be better than The Elegant Universe, but it is better. I am very glad I decided to read it.

The state of physics vis-à-vis string theory has been much in the news lately. Greene is a string theorist, but in The Elegant Universe, I thought he presented many of its shortcomings such as the multitude of hypotheses and theories and lack of experimental evidence for them. The Fabric of the Universe has a section on string theory, but that is not the thrust of the book, which is to explain space, time, and physical reality from the physicist’s point of view. This is one of those books where he explains things so well that you actually feel as if you understand a little about such things as the Higgs field and ocean and what they explain about the universe.

At any rate, if you are interested in elegant and informative science writing and the state of modern physics, then you cannot go wrong by reading The Fabric of the Cosmos.

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