The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design

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9780316155793: The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design

In his first book ever, the father of string theory reinvents our concept of the known universe and mans unique place within it. The beginning of the 21st century is a watershed in modern science, a time that will forever change our understanding of the universe, Leonard Susskind contends. Several decades ago, Susskind introduced the revolutionary concept of string theory to the world of physical science. In doing so, he inspired a generation of physicists who believed that the theory would uniquely predict the properties of our universe. Now, in his first book ever, Susskind argues that the very idea of such an elegant theory no longer suits our understanding of the universe, and that our narrow 20th-century view of a unique universe will have to give way to the much broader concept of a gigantic cosmic landscapea megaverse, pregnant with new possibilities. His other contributions to physics are too numerous to mention, but his recent victory in an argument with Stephen Hawking over the nature of black holes made headlines everywhere.

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About the Author :

Leonard Susskind has been the Felix Bloch Professor in theoretical physics at Stanford University since 1978. The author of The Cosmic Landscape, he is a member of the National Academy of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and recipient of numerous prizes including the science writing prize of the American Institute of Physics for his Scientific American article on black holes.

From Publishers Weekly :

Starred Review. As modern physics has developed a better understanding of how the universe operates at its most fundamental levels, one thing has become increasingly clear: we're damned lucky to be here at all. The laws of physics are precariously balanced, and were the value of one constant slightly different, life as we know it wouldn't exist. To explain the ridiculous improbability of it all, some physicists have turned to the "Anthropic Principle": the universe seems perfectly tailored to us because if it weren't, we wouldn't be here to observe it. The underlying rationale for this argument involves the "landscape" of potential laws of physics (which, it turns out, aren't so immutable after all), a whole bunch of extra dimensions and lots of particle physics. Luckily, Susskind—the father of string theory—does the job right, guiding readers through the current controversy over the Anthropic Principle. Make no mistake: this is the cutting edge of physics as described by one of the sharpest scientific minds around. While the subtitle is a bit misleading (this isn't about intelligent design in the Kansas Board of Education sense, but actually a controversy at once bigger and less prominent), persistent readers will finish this book understanding and caring about contemporary physics in ways both unexpected and gratifying. (Dec. 12)
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Susskind, Leonard
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Description du livre Little, Brown, New York and Boston, 2006. Hard Cover. État : New. Etat de la jaquette : New. Book Club (BCE/BOMC). Book club edition. 8vo. Hard cover binding, 403 pp. Here one of the originators of string theory offers, for lay readers, a radical concept of the known universe and man's unique place within it. Several decades ago Leonard Susskind introduced the revolutionary concept of string theory to the world of physical science. In doing so, he inspired a generation of physicists who believed that the theory would predict the properties of our universe. Now, however, Susskind argues that the very idea of such an elegant theory no longer suits our understanding of the universe, and that our narrow 20th-century view of a unique universe will have to give way to the much broader concept of a gigantic cosmic landscape—a megaverse, pregnant with new possibilities. New in new dustjacket. N° de réf. du libraire 017802

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