Moving from Isaac Newton's work on gravity and motion in the seventeenth century to thermodynamics and James Clerk Maxwell's laws of electromagnetism in the nineteenth to Max Planck's and Paul Dirac's quantum physics in the twentieth, Professor Close turns finally to contemporary physics and the power and limitations of the current theory of everything. The cycle in which one theory of everything is first challenged and then replaced by another is continuing right now.
"Close's writing is beguiling, mingling personal and historical anecdote with carefully measured doses of exposition in such a way as to guide the reader painlessly into rather deep intellectual waters." — Nature
"Life, intrinsically related to asymmetries, is the theme of this book, and Close offers us an absorbing and scientifically correct account of symmetry and its deep implications." — CERN Courier
This thought-provoking work by a physicist and popular science writer explores the origins of asymmetry from the molecular level to that of the universe at large. Frank Close takes readers on a tour of asymmetry that ranges from the development of human embryos to the mysterious Higgs boson, or "God particle," and ongoing research at Switzerland's CERN laboratory.