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UNDERSTANDING PHYSICS is an innovative introductory course designed for students preparing to enter careers in fields outside of science or engineering, including students planning to teach, or already teaching, in K-12 classrooms. It is inspired by the famous Project Physics Course, which became known for its success in inspiring students with the excitement of physics by placing its concepts within a broader humanistic context.||UNDERSTANDING PHYSICS enables students to gain a full appreciation of physics both as a discipline and as a body of knowledge: a sense of what the concepts mean, where they came from, and why we think we know what we know. The course is among the first to accommodate recommendations of the "National Science Education Standards" from the National Academy of Sciences and the "Benchmarks for Science Literacy" from Project 2061 at the college level. Understanding Physics also incorporates the most recent advances in understanding how students learn physics and where they encounter difficulties, and it offers great flexibility to instructors to adapt the course to the needs of their students and to their own needs and interests.||The course components - textbook, student guide, instructor guide - all work together to provide students with an integrated experience in physics. |·The text provides a conceptual framework and connecting narrative for the course that promotes an active engagement with the material. |·Each chapter contains questions designed to help students confirm what they have learned as well as questions to encourage them to go beyond the reading, in individual study, laboratory work, and group discussion. |·The student guide provides both written and hands-on activities for enhancing understanding|·The suggested laboratory work includes in-depth explorations, student-designed inquiries, and text-related mini-explorations that may be used as hands-on activities or as demonstrations with student participation.
Winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics

Ever since Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity burst upon the world in 1915 some of the most brilliant minds of our century have sought to decipher the mysteries bequeathed by that theory, a legacy so unthinkable in some respects that even Einstein himself rejected them.

Which of these bizarre phenomena, if any, can really exist in our universe? Black holes, down which anything can fall but from which nothing can return; wormholes, short spacewarps connecting regions of the cosmos; singularities, where space and time are so violently warped that time ceases to exist and space becomes a kind of foam; gravitational waves, which carry symphonic accounts of collisions of black holes billions of years ago; and time machines, for traveling backward and forward in time.

Kip Thorne, along with fellow theorists Stephen Hawking and Roger Penrose, a cadre of Russians, and earlier scientists such as Oppenheimer, Wheeler and Chandrasekhar, has been in the thick of the quest to secure answers. In this masterfully written and brilliantly informed work of scientific history and explanation, Dr. Thorne, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and the Feynman Professor of Theoretical Physics Emeritus at Caltech, leads his readers through an elegant, always human, tapestry of interlocking themes, coming finally to a uniquely informed answer to the great question: what principles control our universe and why do physicists think they know the things they think they know? Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time has been one of the greatest best-sellers in publishing history. Anyone who struggled with that book will find here a more slowly paced but equally mind-stretching experience, with the added fascination of a rich historical and human component.

Winner of the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science.

The most famous scientist of the twentieth century, Albert Einstein was also one of the century's most outspoken political activists. Deeply engaged with the events of his tumultuous times, from the two world wars and the Holocaust, to the atomic bomb and the Cold War, to the effort to establish a Jewish homeland, Einstein was a remarkably prolific political writer, someone who took courageous and often unpopular stands against nationalism, militarism, anti-Semitism, racism, and McCarthyism. In Einstein on Politics, leading Einstein scholars David Rowe and Robert Schulmann gather Einstein's most important public and private political writings and put them into historical context. The book reveals a little-known Einstein--not the ineffectual and naïve idealist of popular imagination, but a principled, shrewd pragmatist whose stands on political issues reflected the depth of his humanity.

Nothing encapsulates Einstein's profound involvement in twentieth-century politics like the atomic bomb. Here we read the former militant pacifist's 1939 letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt warning that Germany might try to develop an atomic bomb. But the book also documents how Einstein tried to explain this action to Japanese pacifists after the United States used atomic weapons to destroy Hiroshima and Nagasaki, events that spurred Einstein to call for international control of nuclear technology.

A vivid firsthand view of how one of the twentieth century's greatest minds responded to the greatest political challenges of his day, Einstein on Politics will forever change our picture of Einstein's public activism and private motivations.

“One of the best popular accounts of how Einstein and his followers have been trying to explain the universe for decades” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review).
 
Physicists have been exploring, debating, and questioning the general theory of relativity ever since Albert Einstein first presented it in 1915. This has driven their work to unveil the universe’s surprising secrets even further, and many believe more wonders remain hidden within the theory’s tangle of equations, waiting to be exposed. In this sweeping narrative of science and culture, an astrophysicist brings general relativity to life through the story of the brilliant physicists, mathematicians, and astronomers who have taken up its challenge. For these scientists, the theory has been both a treasure trove and an enigma.
 
Einstein’s theory, which explains the relationships among gravity, space, and time, is possibly the most perfect intellectual achievement of modern physics—yet studying it has always been a controversial endeavor. Relativists were the target of persecution in Hitler’s Germany, hounded in Stalin’s Russia, and disdained in 1950s America. Even today, PhD students are warned that specializing in general relativity will make them unemployable.
 
Still, general relativity has flourished, delivering key insights into our understanding of the origin of time and the evolution of all the stars and galaxies in the cosmos. Its adherents have revealed what lies at the farthest reaches of the universe, shed light on the smallest scales of existence, and explained how the fabric of reality emerges. Dark matter, dark energy, black holes, and string theory are all progeny of Einstein’s theory.
 
In the midst of a momentous transformation in modern physics, as scientists look farther and more clearly into space than ever before, The Perfect Theory exposes the greater relevance of general relativity, showing us where it started, where it has led—and where it can still take us.
 
In a book that is both biography and the most exciting form of history, here are eighteen years in the life of a man, Albert Einstein, and a city, Berlin, that were in many ways the defining years of the twentieth century.

Einstein in Berlin

In the spring of 1913 two of the giants of modern science traveled to Zurich. Their mission: to offer the most prestigious position in the very center of European scientific life to a man who had just six years before been a mere patent clerk. Albert Einstein accepted, arriving in Berlin in March 1914 to take up his new post. In December 1932 he left Berlin forever. “Take a good look,” he said to his wife as they walked away from their house. “You will never see it again.”

In between, Einstein’s Berlin years capture in microcosm the odyssey of the twentieth century. It is a century that opens with extravagant hopes--and climaxes in unparalleled calamity. These are tumultuous times, seen through the life of one man who is at once witness to and architect of his day--and ours. He is present at the events that will shape the journey from the commencement of the Great War to the rumblings of the next one.

We begin with the eminent scientist, already widely recognized for his special theory of relativity. His personal life is in turmoil, with his marriage collapsing, an affair under way. Within two years of his arrival in Berlin he makes one of the landmark discoveries of all time: a new theory of gravity--and before long is transformed into the first international pop star of science. He flourishes during a war he hates, and serves as an instrument of reconciliation in the early months of the peace; he becomes first a symbol of the hope of reason, then a focus for the rage and madness of the right.

And throughout these years Berlin is an equal character, with its astonishing eruption of revolutionary pathways in art and architecture, in music, theater, and literature. Its wild street life and sexual excesses are notorious. But with the debacle of the depression and Hitler’s growing power, Berlin will be transformed, until by the end of 1932 it is no longer a safe home for Einstein. Once a hero, now vilified not only as the perpetrator of “Jewish physics” but as the preeminent symbol of all that the Nazis loathe, he knows it is time to leave.
A daring new vision of quantum theory from one of the leading minds of contemporary physics

Quantum physics is the golden child of modern science. It is the basis of our understanding of atoms, radiation, and so much else, from elementary particles and basic forces to the behavior of materials. But for a century it has also been the problem child of science: it has been plagued by intense disagreements between its inventors, strange paradoxes, and implications that seem like the stuff of fantasy. Whether it's Schrödinger's cat--a creature that is simultaneously dead and alive--or a belief that the world does not exist independently of our observations of it, quantum theory challenges our fundamental assumptions about reality.

In Einstein's Unfinished Revolution, theoretical physicist Lee Smolin provocatively argues that the problems which have bedeviled quantum physics since its inception are unsolved and unsolvable, for the simple reason that the theory is incomplete. There is more to quantum physics, waiting to be discovered. Our task--if we are to have simple answers to our simple questions about the universe we live in--must be to go beyond quantum mechanics to a description of the world on an atomic scale that makes sense.

In this vibrant and accessible book, Smolin takes us on a journey through the basics of quantum physics, introducing the stories of the experiments and figures that have transformed our understanding of the universe, before wrestling with the puzzles and conundrums that the quantum world presents. Along the way, he illuminates the existing theories that might solve these problems, guiding us towards a vision of the quantum that embraces common sense realism.

If we are to have any hope of completing the revolution that Einstein began nearly a century ago, we must go beyond quantum mechanics to find a theory that will give us a complete description of nature. In Einstein's Unfinished Revolution, Lee Smolin brings us a step closer to resolving one of the greatest scientific controversies of our age.
Welcome, intrepid temporal explorers, to the world's first and only field manual/survival guide to time travel!DON'T LEAVE THIS TIME PERIOD WITHOUT IT! Humans from H. G. Wells to Albert Einstein to Bill & Ted have been fascinated by time travel-some say drawn to it like moths to a flame. But in order to travel safely and effectively, newbie travelers need to know the dos and don'ts. Think of this handy little book as the only thing standing between you and an unimaginably horrible death-or being trapped forever in another time or alternate reality. You get: Essential time travel knowledge: Choosing the right time machine, from DeLoreans to hot tubs to phone booths-and beyond What to say-and what NOT to say-to your doppelganger Understanding black holes and Stephen Hawking's term "spaghettification" (no, it's not a method of food preperation; yes, it is a horrifically painful way to meet your end) The connection between Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, traversing wormholes and the 88 mph speed requirement The possible consequences of creating a time paradox-including, but not limited to, the implosion of the universe Survival tips for nearly any sticky time travel situation: How to befriend a dinosaur and subsequently fight other dinosaurs with that dinosaur Instructions to build your very own Rube Goldberg Time Machine Crusading-for fun and profit Tips on battling cowboys, pirates, ninjas, samurai, Nazis, Vikings, robots and space marines How to operate a microwave oven Enjoying the servitude of robots and tips for living underground when they inevitably rise up against us
Just how real is reality, anyway? Forget everything you thought you knew about reality.

The world is a seriously bizarre place. Things can exist in two places at once and travel backwards and forwards in time. Waves and particles are one and the same, and objects change their behavior according to whether they are being watched.

This is not some alternative universe but the realm of the very small, where quantum mechanics rules. In this weird world of atoms and their constituents, our common sense understanding of reality breaks down - yet quantum mechanics has never failed an experimental test.

What does it all mean?

For all its weirdness, quantum mechanics has given us many practical technologies including lasers and the transistors that underlie computers and all digital technology. In the future, it promises computers more powerful than any built before, the ability to communicate with absolute privacy, and even quantum teleportation.

The Quantum World explores the past, present and future of quantum science, its applications and mind-bending implications. Discover how ideas from quantum mechanics are percolating out into the vast scale of the cosmos - perhaps, in the future, to reveal a new understanding of the big bang and the nature of space and time.

ABOUT THE SERIES
New Scientist Instant Expert books are definitive and accessible entry points to the most important subjects in science; subjects that challenge, attract debate, invite controversy and engage the most enquiring minds. Designed for curious readers who want to know how things work and why, the Instant Expert series explores the topics that really matter and their impact on individuals, society, and the planet, translating the scientific complexities around us into language that's open to everyone, and putting new ideas and discoveries into perspective and context.
In this splendidly lucid and profusely illustrated book, a Nobel laureate relates the fascinating story of Einstein, the general and special theories of relativity, and the scientists before and since who influenced relativity's genesis and development. Eschewing technical terms in favor of ordinary language, the book offers a perfect introduction to relativity for readers without specialized knowledge of mathematics and science.
The author follows Einstein's own dictum to make explanations "as simple as possible, but not more so." His periodic use of equations as points of clarification involve nothing more than simple algebra; these can be disregarded by math-averse readers. Dr. Schwinger begins with a discussion of the conflict between two principles of electromagnetic theory that are irreconcilable in Newtonian physics, and how Einstein's attempts to resolve this conflict led to the theory of relativity. Readers learn about the meaning of time and the paradoxes of space travel at speeds close to that of light, following the development of Einstein's relativistic thought and his epochal perception that E=mc2. Further chapters examine gravity and its effect on light; non-Euclidean geometry and the curving of space-time; and the impact of radio astronomy and space-age discoveries upon Einstein's model of the universe.
Amusing quotes, suppositions, and illustrative fictions — along with numerous sidebars and boxes explaining physical principles, anomalies, events, and inventions — enhance this accessible introduction, and provide stimulating food for thought. Preface. 189 black-and-white illustrations. Sources of the Illustrations. Index.
"More than a history of science; it is a tour de force in the genre."—New York Times Book Review A dramatic new account of the parallel quests to harness time that culminated in the revolutionary science of relativity, Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Maps is "part history, part science, part adventure, part biography, part meditation on the meaning of modernity....In Galison's telling of science, the meters and wires and epoxy and solder come alive as characters, along with physicists, engineers, technicians and others....Galison has unearthed fascinating material" (New York Times).

Clocks and trains, telegraphs and colonial conquest: the challenges of the late nineteenth century were an indispensable real-world background to the enormous theoretical breakthrough of relativity. And two giants at the foundations of modern science were converging, step-by-step, on the answer: Albert Einstein, an young, obscure German physicist experimenting with measuring time using telegraph networks and with the coordination of clocks at train stations; and the renowned mathematician Henri Poincaré, president of the French Bureau of Longitude, mapping time coordinates across continents. Each found that to understand the newly global world, he had to determine whether there existed a pure time in which simultaneity was absolute or whether time was relative.

Esteemed historian of science Peter Galison has culled new information from rarely seen photographs, forgotten patents, and unexplored archives to tell the fascinating story of two scientists whose concrete, professional preoccupations engaged them in a silent race toward a theory that would conquer the empire of time.
A key unresolved issue lies at the heart of our science -- the quest of Aristotle, Newton, Einstein, Hawking and many others, now widely known as the Theory of Everything. This ultimate understanding is expected to transform science and resolve its many mysteries -- all via one single overlooked principle in nature that will explain, simplify and unify everything. This quest has produced theories such as Special Relativity, General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics, enormous investments in powerful particle accelerators and space telescopes, and such recent pursuits as "Dark Matter" and "Dark Energy." But enormous problems remain: these theories, projects and pursuits are all completely separate and frequently incompatible, presenting unresolved abstractions, speculation, paradoxes and mysteries that often even violate our laws of physics, upon closer examination. As a result, the Theory of Everything continues to elude us, with no clear way forward. The Final Theory clearly shows why this is the case, exposing centuries of well-intentioned but misguided scientific thought that has locked us into an erroneous and highly troubled energy-based science that has taken us far off track. It corrects the errors in our scientific legacy, showing that energy is actually a misunderstanding of the unifying principle we have sought for centuries -- a principle that is active all around us, producing all known phenomena such as gravity, light, electricity and magnetism. This new understanding replaces both Newton's "gravitational force" theory and Einstein's "warped space-time" General Relativity Theory, while also overturning such theories as Special Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. In their place is a single simple principle that finally demystifies, explains and unifies everything. Read The Final Theory and judge for yourself whether the Theory of Everything has finally arrived!
The philosophy of religion and the quest for spiritual truth preoccupied Albert Einstein--so much that it has been said "one might suspect he was a disguised theologian." Nevertheless, the literature on the life and work of Einstein, extensive as it is, does not provide an adequate account of his religious conception and sentiments. Only fragmentarily known, Einstein's ideas about religion have been often distorted both by atheists and by religious groups eager to claim him as one of their own. But what exactly was Einstein's religious credo? In this fascinating book, the distinguished physicist and philosopher Max Jammer offers an unbiased and well-documented answer to this question.

The book begins with a discussion of Einstein's childhood religious education and the religious atmosphere--or its absence--among his family and friends. It then reconstructs, step by step, the intellectual development that led Einstein to the conceptions of a cosmic religion and an impersonal God, akin to "the God of Spinoza." Jammer explores Einstein's writings and lectures on religion and its role in society, and how far they have been accepted by the general public and by professional theologians like Paul Tillich or Frederick Ferré. He also analyzes the precise meaning of Einstein's famous dictum "Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind," and why this statement can serve as an epitome of Einstein's philosophy of religion.


The last chapter deals with the controversial question of whether Einstein's scientific work, and in particular his theory of relativity, has theologically significant implications, a problem important for those who are interested in the relation between science and religion. Both thought-provoking and engaging, this book aims to introduce readers, without proselytizing, to Einstein's religion.


"Stanley is a storyteller par excellence."--The Washington Post
KIRKUS starred review; PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY starred review; BOOKLIST starred review

The birth of a world-changing idea in the middle of a bloodbath
 Einstein’s War is a riveting exploration of both the beauty of scientific creativity and enduring horrors of human nature. These two great forces battle in a story that culminates with a victory now a century old, the mind bending theory of general relativity.
 
Few recognize how the Great War, the industrialized slaughter that bled Europe from 1914 to 1918, shaped Einstein’s life and work. While Einstein never held a rifle, he formulated general relativity blockaded in Berlin, literally starving.  He lost 50 pounds in three months, unable to communicate with his most important colleagues. Some of those colleagues fought against rabid nationalism; others were busy inventing chemical warfare—being a scientist trapped you in the power plays of empire. Meanwhile, Einstein struggled to craft relativity and persuade the world that it was correct. This was, after all, the first complete revision of our conception of the universe since Isaac Newton, and its victory was far from sure.
 
Scientists seeking to confirm Einstein’s ideas were arrested as spies. Technical journals were banned as enemy propaganda. Colleagues died in the trenches. Einstein was separated from his most crucial ally by barbed wire and U-boats. This ally was the Quaker astronomer and Cambridge don A.S. Eddington who would go on to convince the world of the truth of relativity and the greatness of Einstein.
 
In May of 1919, when Europe was still in chaos from the war, Eddington led a globe-spanning expedition to catch a fleeting solar eclipse for a rare opportunity to confirm Einstein’s bold prediction that light has weight. It was the result of this expedition—the proof of relativity, as many saw it—that put Einstein on front pages around the world. Matthew Stanley’s epic tale is a celebration of how bigotry and nationalism can be defeated, and of what science can offer when they are.
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