Monday, September 26, 2016


The beginning of this book attracted me, which said, "These lessons were written for those who know little or nothing about modern science, but they provide a rapid overview of the most fascinating aspects of the great revolution in physics."
The first lesson is dedicated to Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity, ‘the most beautiful of theories’. After an insight into this theory, which describes a colourful and amazing world where universes explode, space collapses into bottomless holes, time sags and slows near a planet, the next lesson takes us to an interesting discourse on quantum mechanics. How Einstein recommended Heisenberg for nobel prize on account of the studies in uncertainity, and how he found the lack of certainity unnerving!
The next lesson is about the architecture of cosmos. It surveys how, beginning with Anaximander, Pythagorus etc., we reached the plan formulated by Copernicus. How our observations are constantly updating our ideas about the universe.
The fourth lesson is about particles. How the elementary particles proton and neutron are composed of even smaller particles called quarks, and how, the quarks are joined together by another set of particles called gluons.
The next lesson introduces to us, a paradox. That is, if we are to learn general relativity in the mornings where we consider space as curved and without breaks, and listen to quantum mechanics in the afternoons where space is flat and energy leaps in quanta, the paradox will be that both the thories are correct.
The book concludes by observing that there is room for a new thory. which could emerge to bring together quantum mechanics and relativity, just as the theory of relativity emerged to resolve the conflict between electromagnetism and mechanics.