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Oxford University Press
28 December 2017
Mathematics & Sciences; History of science; Classical mechanics; Applied physics
The pendulum is a unique physical system which exhibits remarkably varied and complex behavior under many different conditions. It is also a system which, in its many manifestations, has left a significant imprint on human thought and culture. Using graphs, figures, and narrative to explain scientific ideas and models, Gregory Baker gives a lucid account of the physics of the pendulum, showing the reader how the context of the pendulum progresses over four centuries from that of a simple system of classical physics, to that of a chaotic system, and eventually to that of a modern quantum system. He also describes its fascinating presence in cultural history, from its role in timekeeping and measurements of the earth to its importance as a literary symbol of doom.
By:   Gregory L. Baker (Bryn Athyn College of the New Church Bryn Athyn Pennsylvania USA), Gregory L. Baker (Bryn Athyn College of the New Church, Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania, USA), Gregory L. Baker (Bryn Athyn College of the New Church, Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania, USA)
Imprint:   Oxford University Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 141mm,  Spine: 13mm
Weight:   360g
ISBN:   9780198816904
ISBN 10:   0198816901
Pages:   256
Publication Date:   28 December 2017
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Gregory L. Baker was born and educated in Toronto receiving his B.Sc. in mathematics and physics from the University of Toronto, and his M.Sc and Ph.D. in physics, also from the University of Toronto. He has taught physics and mathematics at Bryn Athyn College since 1970, retiring from fulltime involvement in 2007. His scholarly interests have included stochastic processes (as a consultant), chaotic dynamics, and the relationship between religion and science. He has authored or co-authored more than sixty publications, many of which have appeared in peer reviewed journals. His books include the best selling Chaotic Dynamics: an Introduction, a technical/cultural book on the pendulum The Pendulum: a case study in physics, and Religion and Science: from Swedenborg to chaotic dynamics. Baker is a member of the American Physical Society and the American Association of Physics Teachers, and is a recipient of the Glencairn award for scholarship at Bryn Athyn College.

Reviews for Seven Tales of the Pendulum

Seven Tales of the Pendulum would be a fine addition to the bookshelf of a teacher who wished to understand more about physics than he or she was required to teach and who wished to stimulate his or her students to investigate areas beyond the syllabus. Complex ideas are explained clearly by the author and the use of diagrams and photographs provides valuable support for these explanations. * Science & Education * A good popular science book will uncover the hidden workings of familiar mechanisms, push this understanding through to lesser known phenomena, and reveal links between apparently disparate branches of science, nature, history and culture. Seven Tales of the Pendulum achieves each of these in an easy, readable style. The book swings through a wide arc of topics, from classical applications of the pendulum as an experimental tool, a time-keeper, and a symbolic artefact, to more modern uses, including chaos theory, synchronization and quantum physics. A good mix of precise descriptions, clear diagrams, and interesting anecdotes make this an enjoyable and informative read. * Rob Sturman, University of Leeds * Gregory Baker spins a series of tales about how the pendulum became central to a wide range of scientific inquiry and technological development. This book is highly recommended both for the professional scientist and the curious layman, each of whom will find much of interest and will surely learn a thing or two. * Julien Clinton Sprott, University of Wisconsin - Madison * This is a charming and well-written book for general readers, and one that would be of special interest to younger students with an interest in science. It might just be enough to give an extra nudge to a prospective scientist.

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