Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Book Review

Mathematician Roger Penrose’s book “ The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe” (2004) ISBN 0-679-45443-8; OFL Library location: QC20.P366 2005 is a blast! There is so much to say about this magnificent encyclopedic account of the history and philosophy behind the most important discoveries of humankind. So much that I will not try.

To get a taste of the one-thousand-page book you have to only look at the content.

1. The Roots of Science
2. An Ancient Theorem and a Modern Question
3. Kinds of Numbers in the Physical World
4. Magical Complex Numbers
5. Geometry of Logarithms, Powers, and Roots
6. Real-Number Calculus
7. Complex-Number Calculus
8. Riemann Surfaces and Complex Mappings
9. Fourier Decomposition and Hyperfunctions
10. Surfaces
11. Hypercomplex Numbers
12. Manifolds of n-Dimensions
13. Symmetry Groups
14. Calculus on Manifolds
15. Fibre Bundles and Gauge Connections
16. The Ladder of Infinity
17. Spacetime
18. Minkoiskian Geometry
19. The Classical Fields of Maxwell and Einstein
20. Lagragians and Hamiltonians
21. The Quantum Particle
22. Quantum Algebra, Geometry, and Spin
23. The Entangled Quantum World
24. Dirac’s Electron and Antiparticles
25. The Standard Model of Particle Physics
26. Quantum Field Theory
27. The Big Bang and its Thermodynamic Legacy
28. Speculative Theories of the Early Universe
29. The Measurement Paradox
30. Gravity’s Role in Quantum State Reduction
31. Super-symmetry, Supra-Dimensionality, and Strings
32. Einstein’s Narrower-path; Loop Variables
33. More Radical Perspectives; Twistor Theory
And finally
34. Where Lies the Road to Reality.

If you are interested in paradox, language, ontology or semantics this is the book for you! It looks like it is only about mathematics but it is not. Written for the general public, it doesn’t require you to be proficient in math even though formulas are used in order to clarify the semantic connection of reality with concept. In fact I recommend this reading to those who have had bad experiences with math. Penrose is one of the clearest minds alive today and his writings in Mathematical Physics directed to specialists, as well as his writings directed to the general public have become classics.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

No Time at All

As I try to write at least once a day. It shows that I have not been successful, It is more like once a month. Time is scarce. No writing but a lot of reading! One book: Yourgrau's "A World Without Time" is an account of the friendship between Godel and Einstein comes to my point about not having time as Godel's hypothesis is that "time doesn't exist."