In his most ambitious work yet, Shermer sets out to discover what drives humans' belief in life after death, focusing on recent scientific attempts to achieve immortality along with utopian attempts to create heaven on earth. For millennia, religions have concocted numerous manifestations of heaven and the afterlife, and though no one has ever returned from such a place to report what it is really like-or that it even exists-today science and technology are being used to try to make it happen in our lifetime. From radical life extension to cryonic suspension to mind uploading, Shermer considers how realistic these attempts are from a proper skeptical perspective. Heavens on Earth concludes with an uplifting paean to purpose and progress and how we can live well in the here-and-now, whether or not there is a hereafter.
In the beginning there was light
but more than this, there was gravity.
After that, all hell broke loose...
This is how the story of the greatest intellectual adventure in history should be introduced - how humanity reached its current understanding of the universe, one that is far removed from the realm of everyday experience. Krauss connects the world we know with the invisible world all around us, which is removed from intuition and direct sensation. He explains our current understanding of nature and the struggle to construct the greatest theoretical edifice ever assembled, the Standard Model of Particle Physics - and then to understand its implications for our existence.
Writing in the critically acclaimed style of A Universe from Nothing, Krauss celebrates the beauty and wonders of the natural world and details our place within it and how this shapes our understanding of it. Krauss makes this story accessible through profiles of the scientists responsible for these advances, and clear explanations of their discoveries. Krauss takes us on a tour of science and the brilliant personalities who shaped it, often against political and religious indoctrination, enduring persecution and ostracism. Krauss creates a captivating blend of research and narrative to invite us into the lives and minds of these figures,creating a landmark work of scientific history.
In 1942, a team at the University of Chicago achieved what no one had before: a nuclear chain reaction. At the forefront of this breakthrough stood Enrico Fermi. Straddling the ages of classical physics and quantum mechanics, equally at ease with theory and experiment, Fermi truly was the last man who knew everything-at least about physics. But he was also a complex figure who was a part of both the Italian Fascist Party and the Manhattan Project, and a less-than-ideal father and husband who nevertheless remained one of history's greatest mentors. Based on new archival material and exclusive interviews, The Last Man Who Knew Everything lays bare the enigmatic life of a colossus of twentieth century physics.
A closer look at social history and the growth of the human brain.
When and how did the brains of our hominin ancestors become human minds? When and why did our capacity for language, art, music and dance evolve? This pathbreaking book proposes that it was the need for early humans to live in ever-larger social groups over greater distances; the ability to “think big”; that drove the enlargement of the human brain and the development of the human mind. This social brain hypothesis, put forward by evolutionary psychologists such as Robin Dunbar, can be tested against archaeological and fossil evidence.
The conclusions here - the fruits of over seven years of research - build on the insight that modern humans live in effective social groups of about 150 (so-called “Dunbar’s number”), some three times the size of those of apes and our early ancestors. We live in a world dominated by social networking. Yet our virtual contact lists, whether on Facebook or Twitter, are on average no bigger than Dunbar’s number.
In 1988 The Mathematical Intelligencer, a quarterly mathematics journal, carried out a poll to find the most beautiful theorem in mathematics. Twenty-four theorems were listed and readers were invited to award each a 'score for beauty'. While there were many worthy competitors, the winner was 'Euler's equation'. In 2004 Physics World carried out a similar poll of 'greatest equations', and found that among physicists Euler's mathematical result came second only to Maxwell's equations. The Stanford mathematician Keith Devlin reflected the feelings of many in describing it as "like a Shakespearian sonnet that captures the very essence of love, or a painting which brings out the beauty of the human form that is far more than just skin deep, Euler's equation reaches down into the very depths of existence."
What is it that makes Euler's identity, e]iPi + 1 = 0, so special?
In Euler's Pioneering Equation Robin Wilson shows how this simple, elegant, and profound formula links together perhaps the five most important numbers in mathematics, each associated with a story in themselves: the number 1, the basis of our counting system; the concept of zero, which was a major development in mathematics, and opened up the idea of negative numbers; Pi an irrational number, the basis for the measurement of circles; the exponential e, associated with exponential growth and logarithms; and the imaginary number i, the square root of -1, the basis of complex numbers. Following a chapter on each of the elements, Robin Wilson discusses how the startling relationship between them was established, including the several near misses to the discovery of the formula.
NASA's history is a familiar story, one that typically peaks with Neil Armstrong taking his small step on the Moon in 1969. But America's space agency wasn't created in a vacuum. It was assembled from pre-existing parts, drawing together some of the best minds the non-Soviet world had to offer. In the 1930s, rockets were all the rage in Germany, the focus both of scientists hoping to fly into space and of the German armed forces, looking to circumvent the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. One of the key figures in this period was Wernher von Braun, an engineer who designed the rockets that became the devastating V-2. As the war came to its chaotic conclusion, von Braun escaped from the ruins of Nazi Germany, and was taken to America where he began developing missiles for the US Army. Meanwhile, the US Air Force was looking ahead to a time when men would fly in space, and test pilots like Neil Armstrong were flying cutting-edge, rocket-powered aircraft in the thin upper atmosphere. Breaking the Chains of Gravity tells the story of America's nascent space program, its scientific advances, its personalities and the rivalries it caused between the various arms of the US military. At this point getting a man in space became a national imperative, leading to the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, otherwise known as NASA.
Hubble Images from Space: a Virtual Tour is a book of images from the Hubble telescope curated and edited by Beth Alesse who works in Los Angeles, California. The images were collected using space-based instruments of the Hubble telescope from 1990 to 2017, many in combination with data from numerous other telescopes and instruments. This amazing selection contains new images of space and classic Hubble favourites.
All the major players of space are represented in this colourful array of images: planets, moons, comets, exoplanets, solar systems, stars, supernovas, the Milky Way, galaxies, black holes, nebulae, and more. Experience the near and far of our universe, evidence of its primordial beginnings, its vastness, and a great variety of evidence of stellar and galactic evolution through these awe-inspiring colourful images.
The first book to extensively cover the immediate and long-term aftermath of the 2003 Columbia disaster, a shared national disaster that had a significant impact on space missions and the shuttle program.Written by the launch director of the mission (the guy who said go ), the book has an insider's perspective from someone who was there and involved both in mission planning and execution, but who was also heavily involved in directing response efforts.As launch director and director of recovery efforts, Mike Leinbach has extensive media and press conference experience; contacts with NBC, CBS, AP, and others. An in-depth account of the monumental post-explosion search (the largest search-and-recovery operation in US history) where 25,000 searchers and millions of dollars were involved in combing through rough terrain over an area the size of Rhode Island for every single bit of the shuttle and her crew they could find. Includes incredible human stories, such as someone finding and returning the watch a technician gave one of the astronauts while they were dating, and the amazing support provided to NASA and the searchers by the local community. Has a foreword by astronaut Robert Crippen and an epilogue by astronaut Eileen Collins.
Every rock is a tangible trace of the earth’s past. The Story of the Earth in 25 Rocks tells the fascinating stories behind the discoveries that shook the foundations of geology. In twenty-five chapters - each about a particular rock, outcrop, or geologic phenomenon - Donald R. Prothero recounts the scientific detective work that shaped our understanding of geology, from the unearthing of exemplary specimens to tectonic shifts in how we view the inner workings of our planet.
Prothero follows in the footsteps of the scientists who asked - and answered - geology’s biggest questions: How do we know how old the earth is? What happened to the supercontinent Pangea? How did ocean rocks end up at the top of Mount Everest? What can we learn about our planet from meteorites and moon rocks? He answers these questions through expertly chosen case studies, such as Pliny the Younger’s firsthand account of the eruption of Vesuvius; the granite outcrops that led a Scottish scientist to theorize that the landscapes he witnessed were far older than Noah’s Flood; the salt and gypsum deposits under the Mediterranean Sea that indicate that it was once a desert; and how trying to date the age of meteorites revealed the dangers of lead poisoning. Each of these breakthroughs filled in a piece of the greater puzzle that is the earth, with scientific discoveries dovetailing with each other to offer an increasingly coherent image of the geologic past.
Summarizing a wealth of information in an entertaining, approachable style, The Story of the Earth in 25 Rocks is essential reading for the armchair geologist, the rock hound, and all who are curious about the earth beneath their feet.
To see a world in a grain of sand, And a heaven in a wild flower. To hold infinity in the palm of your hand, And eternity in an hour. William Blake, Auguries of Innocence, 1805 Here is the world viewed within a grain of sand, thanks to the stunning three-dimensional microphotography of Dr. Gary Greenberg. To some, all sand looks alike -countless grains in a vast expanse of beach. Look closer - much closer - and your view of sand will never be the same. Employing the fantastic microphotographic techniques that he developed, Greenberg invites readers to discover the strange and wonderful world that each grain of sand contains. Here are the sands of Hawaii and Tahiti, the Sahara and the Poles, a volcano, each exquisitely different, and each telling a fascinating geological story. Red sand and yellow, white sand and black, singing sand and quicksand: Greenberg's pictures reveal the subtle differences in their colours, textures, sizes, and shapes. And as this infinitesimal world unfolds so does an intriguing explanation of how each grain of sand begins and forms and finds itself in a particular place, one of a billion and one of a kind.
Sit back and enjoy a new view Filled with fun facts, fascinating histories, and atmospheric photography, Aerial Geology is an up-in-the-sky exploration of North America's 100 most spectacular geological formations. Crisscrossing the continent from the Aleutian Islands in Alaska to the Great Salt Lake in Utah and to the Chicxulub Crater in Mexico, Mary Caperton Morton brings you on a fantastic tour, sharing aerial and satellite photography, explanations on how each site was formed, and details on what makes each landform noteworthy. Maps and diagrams help illustrate the geological processes and clarify scientific concepts. Fact-filled, curious, and way more fun than the geology you remember from grade school, Aerial Geology is a must-have for the insatiably curious, armchair geologists, million-mile travelers, and anyone who has stared out the window of a plane and wondered what was below.
Throughout history, swamps have been idealised and demonised, purged and protected. They are considered to be places of evil, pestilence, and death, as well as diverse ecosystems teeming with life. They can be obstacles to development and remnants of fading cultures. Distillations of pure wildness, with menacing morasses and fragile wetlands, swamps have fascinated, terrified, frustrated, and sustained us throughout human history.
From swamps and bogs to marshes and wetlands, Swamp ventures into the cultural and ecological histories of these mysterious, mythologised, and misunderstood landscapes. It ranges from the freshwater marshes of Botswana's tremendous Okavango Delta, to the notable swamps between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers and the peat bogs in Russia, the British Isles, and Scandinavia. It explores ideas and representations of wetlands across centuries, cultures, and continents, considering legend and folklore, mythology, literature, film, and natural and cultural history. As it plumbs the murky depths of their complex relationship with people all over the world, from the distant past to the uncertain future, Swamp provides an engaging, informative, and lavishly illustrated journey into these fascinating and mysterious landscapes.
Environmentalism has relentlessly warned about the dire consequences of abusing and exploiting the planet's natural resources, imagining future wastelands of ecological depletion and social chaos. But it has also generated rich new ideas about how humans might live better with nature. Green Utopias explores these ideas of environmental hope in the post-war period, from the environmental crisis to the end of nature. Using a broad definition of Utopia as it exists in Western policy, theory and literature, Lisa Garforth explains how its developing entanglement with popular culture and mainstream politics has shaped successive green future visions and initiatives. In the face of apocalyptic, despairing or indifferent responses to contemporary ecological dilemmas, utopias and the utopian method seem more necessary than ever. This distinctive reading of green political thought and culture will appeal across the social sciences and humanities to all interested in why green utopias continue to matter in the cultivation of ecological values and the emergence of new forms of human and non-human well-being.
Australia is the custodian of a diverse range of continental and oceanic islands. From Heard and Macquarie in the sub-Antarctic, to temperate Lord Howe and Norfolk, to the tropical Cocos (Keeling) and the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia's islands contain some of the nation's most iconic fauna, flora and ecosystems. They are a refuge for over 35% of Australia's threatened species and for many others declining on mainland Australia. They also have significant cultural value, especially for Indigenous communities, and economic value as centres for tourism.
Australian Island Arks presents a compelling case for restoring and managing islands to conserve our natural heritage. With contributions from island practitioners, researchers and policy-makers, it reviews current island management practices and discusses the need and options for future conservation work. Chapters focus on the management of invasive species, threatened species recovery, conservation planning, Indigenous cultural values and partnerships, tourism enterprises, visitor management, and policy and legislature. Case studies show how island restoration and conservation approaches are working in Australia and what the emerging themes are for the future.
Australian Island Arks will help island communities, managers, visitors and decision-makers to understand the current status of Australia's islands, their management challenges, and the opportunities that exist to make best use of these iconic landscapes.
Rocky outcrops are landscape features with disproportionately high biodiversity values relative to their size. They support specialised plants and animals, and a wide variety of endemic species. To Indigenous Australians, they are sacred places and provide valuable resources. Despite their ecological and cultural importance, many rocky outcrops and associated biota are threatened by agricultural and recreational activities, forestry and mining operations, invasive weeds, altered fire regimes, and climate change. Rocky Outcrops in Australia: Ecology, Conservation and Management contains chapters on why this habitat is important, the animals that live and depend on these formations, key threatening processes, and how rocky outcrops can be managed to improve biodiversity conservation in agricultural landscapes, state forests, and protected areas. This book will be an important reference for landholders, Landcare groups, naturalists interested in Australian wildlife, and natural resource managers.
Wine and Spirits Book of the Year 2017 In little more than a century, the drive towards industrial and intensive farming has altered every aspect of the cheesemaking process, from the bodies of the animals that provide the milk to the science behind the microbial strains that ferment it. Reinventing the Wheel explores what has been lost as expressive, artisanal cheeses that convey a sense of place have given way to the juggernaut of homogeneous factory production. While Bronwen and Francis Percival lament the decline of farmhouse cheese and reject the consequences of industrialisation, this book's message is one of optimism. Scientists have only recently begun to reveal the significance of the healthy microbial communities that contribute to the flavour and safety of cheese, while local producers are returning to the cheese-making methods of their parents and grandparents. This smart, engaging book sheds light on the surprising truths and science behind the dairy industry. Discover how, one experiment at a time, these dynamic communities of researchers and cheesemakers are reinventing the wheel.
Have you ever wondered how the ideas for some things come about? Surprisingly it is often as much down to chance as a single person's brilliance. The Accidental Scientist explores the role of chance and error in scientific, medical and commercial innovation, outlining exactly how some of the most well-known products, gadgets and useful gizmos came to be. Encompassing everything from DNA profiling to fingerprinting and TNT to the telephone, this book explores many of the discoveries that we are all so familiar with today, yet have the most interesting origins because of the story behind them. Not all discoveries require brilliance, and as The Accidental Scientist demonstrates, sometimes a special ingredient is needed: luck.
From the bestselling editor of This Explains Everything, 206 of the world's most brilliant minds tackle Edge.org's 2017 question: What scientific term or concept ought to be more widely known?
As science informs public policy, decision making, and so many aspects of our everyday lives, a scientifically literate society is crucial. In that spirit, Edge.org publisher John Brockman asked 206 the world's best minds the 2017 Edge Question: What scientific term or concept ought to be more widely known?
-author of The God Delusion RICHARD DAWKINS on using animals' "Genetic Book of the Dead" to reconstruct ecological history
-theoretical physicist and author of A Universe from Nothing Lawrence Krauss on "uncertainty" and resisting our temptation to assign meaning to random events
-MacArthur Fellow REBECCA NEWBERGER GOLDSTEIN on "scientific realism," the idea that scientific theories explain phenomena beyond what we can see and touch
-behavioral economist RICHARD THALER on the "premortem," which can help root out potential hazards before making a major business decision
-Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Guns, Germs, and Steel JARED DIAMOND on a basic precept too often missing from scientific discourse: "common sense"
-author of Seven Brief Lessons on Physics CARLO ROVELLI on "relative information," which governs the physical world around us
-author of The Shallows NICHOLAS CARR on "mysterianism," the idea that humans' mastery and understanding of the world around us is illusory
-theoretical cosmologist JANNA LEVIN on the "principle of least action," which allows us to express many of the most complex ideas in a single sentence
-cognitive scientist and author of The Language Instinct STEVEN PINKER on "The Second Law of Thermodynamics"
-author of Emotional Intelligence DANIEL GOLEMAN on "empathic concern," a scientific basis for compassion
-theoretical physicist and Time 100 influencer LISA RANDALL on "effective theories," which reflect what we observe in the world around us
-founding executive editor of Wired KEVIN KELLY on "premature optimization," or why success so often begets failure
-biogerontologist AUBREY DE GREY on why "maladaptive traits" have been conserved evolutionarily
-musician and producer BRIAN ENO on "confirmation bias" in the internet age
-Man Booker-winning author of Atonement IAN MCEWAN on the "Navier-Stokes Equations," which govern everything from weather prediction to aircraft design, to blood flow
-plus pieces from FRANK WILCZEK, RORY SUTHERLAND, NINA JABLONSKI, MARTIN REES, ALISON GOPNIK, and many, many others.
Do you think you need a degree in science to contribute to important scientific discoveries? Think again. All around the world, from Britain to Australia, in fields ranging from astronomy to zoology, millions of ordinary people take part in the scientific process. Working in conjunction with scientists in pursuit of information, innovation and discovery, these volunteers are following protocols, collecting and reviewing data, and sharing their observations. They are our neighbours, our in-laws, our office colleagues, our friends. The story of the social good that can result from citizen science has largely been untold - until now. Citizen scientists are challenging old notions about who can conduct research, where knowledge can be acquired, and even how solutions to some of our biggest social problems might emerge. Cooper reveals the crucial role that they play in gaining scientific understanding and putting that understanding to use as stewards of our world. Their stories will inspire readers to join other amateur scientists in making their own scientific discoveries.
Patricia Fara unearths the forgotten suffragists of World War I who bravely changed women's roles in the war and paved the way for today's female scientists.
Many extraordinary female scientists, doctors, and engineers tasted independence and responsibility for the first time during the First World War. How did this happen? Patricia Fara reveals how suffragists including Virginia Woolf's sister, Ray Strachey, had already aligned themselves with scientific and technological progress, and that during the dark years of war they mobilized women to enter conventionally male domains such as science and medicine. Fara tells the stories of women including mental health pioneer Isabel Emslie, chemist Martha Whiteley, a co-inventor of tear gas, and botanist Helen Gwynne Vaughan. Women were carrying out vital research in many aspects of science, but could it last?
Though suffragist Millicent Fawcett declared triumphantly that "the war revolutionized the industrial position of women. It found them serfs, and left them free," the truth was very different. Although women had helped the country to victory and won the vote for those over thirty, they had lost the battle for equality. Men returning from the Front reclaimed their jobs, and conventional hierarchies were re-established.
Fara examines how the bravery of these pioneers, temporarily allowed into a closed world before the door slammed shut again, paved the way for today's women scientists.
Caroline Herschel was a prolific writer and recorder of her private and academic life, through diaries, autobiographies for family members, notebooks and observation notes. Yet for reasons unknown she destroyed all of her notebooks and diaries from 1788 to 1797. As a result, we have almost no record of the decade in which she made her most influential mark on science when she discovered eight comets and became the first woman to have a paper read at the Royal Society. Here, for the first time, historian Dr Emily Winterburn looks deep into Caroline's life and wonders why, in the year following the marriage of her brother and constant companion, Caroline wanted no record of her life to remain. Was she consumed with grief and jealousy? By piecing together - from letters, reminiscences and museum objects - a detailed account of that time, we get to see a new side to history's `most admirable lady astronomer' and one of the greatest pioneering female scientists of all time.
We are marching towards a future in which three-quarters of humans live in cities, more than half of the landmass of the planet is urbanized, and the rest is covered by farms,pasture, and plantations. Increasingly, as we become ever more city-centric, species and ecosystems crafted by millions of years of evolution teeter on the brink of extinction - or have already disappeared.
A growing band of 'urban ecologists' is beginning to realize that natural selection is not so easily stopped. They are finding that more and more plants and animals are adopting new ways of living in the seemingly hostile environments of asphalt and steel that we humans have created. Carrion crows in the Japanese city of Sendai, for example, have learned to use passing traffic to crack nuts for them; otters and bobcats, no longer persecuted by humans, are waiting at the New York City gates; superb fairy-wrens in Australia have evolved different mating structures for nesting in strips of vegetation along roads; while distinct populations of London underground mosquitoes have been fashioned by the varied tube line environments.
Menno Schilthuizen shows us that evolution can happen far more rapidly than Darwin had dared dream.
A unique, beautifully illustrated exploration of our fascination with our closest primate relatives, and the development of primatology as a discipline.
This insightful work is a compact but wide-ranging survey of humankind’s relationship to the great apes (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, orangutans), from antiquity to the present. Replete with fascinating historical details and anecdotes, it traces twists and turns in our construction of primate knowledge over five hundred years. Chris Herzfeld outlines the development of primatology and its key players and events, including well-known long-term field studies, notably the pioneering work by women such as Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas.
Herzfeld seeks to heighten our understanding of great apes and the many ways they are like us. The reader will encounter apes living in human families, painting apes, apes who use American Sign Language, and chimpanzees who travelled in space.
A philosopher and historian specializing in primatology, Herzfeld offers thought-provoking insights about our perceptions of apes, as well as the boundary between “human” and “ape” and what it means to be either.
True time capsules of life, seeds are significant items of hope and promise. They are the most complex organs plants ever produce, and come in an enormously diverse range of shapes, sizes, and colours; from the impressive coco de mer nut to the microscopic seeds of an orchid, to the extraordinary cobalt blue of the traveller's palm pit.Seeds are often overshadowed by the adult plant's size and show. Here, 600 seeds are spotlit, each given equal attention, each shown as glorious photographs, life size and in detail, alongside an engraving of the parent plant. Every profile includes a population distribution map, a table of essential information, and a commentary revealing notable characteristics, related species, and a diagnosis of the specimen's importance in terms of taxonomy, rarity, dispersal method, and scientific significance. Arranged taxonomically, this essential reference reveals the variety and importance of seeds to an extent never seen before.
This concise classic by Paul R. Halmos, a well-known master of mathematical exposition, has served as a basic introduction to aspects of ergodic theory since its first publication in 1956. "The book is written in the pleasant, relaxed, and clear style usually associated with the author," noted the Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society, adding, "The material is organized very well and painlessly presented."
Suitable for advanced undergraduates and graduate students in mathematics, the treatment covers recurrence, mean and pointwise convergence, ergodic theorem, measure algebras, and automorphisms of compact groups.
Additional topics include weak topology and approximation, uniform topology and approximation, invariant measures, unsolved problems, and other subjects.
An unabridged republication of the classic 1911 edition, this volume covers properties of a group independent of its mode of representation, composition-series of a group, isomorphism of a group with itself, Abelian groups, groups whose orders are the powers of primes, and Sylow's theorem. Permutation groups and groups of linear substitutions receive extensive treatment, along with graphical representation of groups, congruence groups, and special topics.
This concise introductory treatment consists of three chapters: The Geometry of Hilbert Space, The Algebra of Operators, and The Analysis of Spectral Measures. A background in measure theory is the sole prerequisite. An exposition which is always fresh, proofs which are sophisticated, and a choice of subject matter which is certainly timely. - Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society.
This concise treatment of nonlinear noise techniques encountered in system applications is suitable for advanced undergraduates and graduate students.
The book is also a valuable reference for systems analysts and communication engineers, as it discusses the basic mathematical theories of nonlinear transformations applied to random processes encountered in communications and control systems. Prerequisites include a familiarity with statistics, probability, complex variables, and Fourier and Laplace transforms.
The first five chapters present specific classes of nonlinear devices and random processes that in combination lead to closed form solutions for the statistical properties of the transformed process. Subsequent chapters address techniques based on the use of series representations, general systematic approaches to the subject of nonlinear transformations of random processes, and sampling and quantizing a random process. A helpful Appendix features notes on hypergeometric functions.
Dover (2017) unabridged republication of the edition originally published by Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1962.
This collection of historically and technically important papers follows a logical line of development from early work in mathematical control theory to studies in adaptive control processes. The book touches upon all the major themes: stability theory, feedback control, time lag, prediction theory, dynamic programming, "bang-bang" control, and maximum principles.
The book opens with J. C. Maxwell's "On Governors" and continues with "The Control of an Elastic Fluid" by H. Bateman; an essay by editors Bellman and Kalaba, "The Work of Lyapunov and Poincaré"; Hurwitz's "On the Conditions Under Which an Equation Has Only Roots With Negative Real Parts"; Nyquist's "Regeneration Theory"; "Feedback — The History of an Idea" by H. W. Bode; a paper on forced oscillations in a circuit by B. van der Pol; "Self-excited Oscillations in Dynamical Systems Possessing Retarded Action" by N. Minorsky; "An Extension of Wiener's Theory of Prediction" by Zadeh and Ragazzini; "Time Optimal Control Systems" by J. P. LaSalle; "On the Theory of Optimal Processes" by Boltyanskii, Gamkrelidze, and Pontryagin; Bellman's "On the Application of the Theory of Dynamic Programming to the Study of Control Processes"; and the editors' study "Dynamic Programming and Adaptive Processes: Mathematical Foundation."
Each paper is introduced with a brief account of its significance and with some suggestions for further reading.
Concise study presents in a short space some of the important ideas and results in the theory of nonassociative algebras, with particular emphasis on alternative and (commutative) Jordan algebras.
This concise study was the first book to bring together material on the theory of nonassociative algebras, which had previously been scattered throughout the literature. It emphasizes algebras that are, for the most part, finite-dimensional over a field.
Written as an introduction for graduate students and other mathematicians meeting the subject for the first time, the treatment's prerequisites include an acquaintance with the fundamentals of abstract and linear algebra.
After an introductory chapter, the book explores arbitrary nonassociative algebras and alternative algebras. Subsequent chapters concentrate on Jordan algebras and power-associative algebras. Throughout, an effort has been made to present the basic ideas, techniques, and flavor of what happens when the associative law is not assumed. Many of the proofs are given in complete detail.
Weaving together the great ideas of science, in this, his magnum opus, Brian Clegg builds up reality piece by piece, from space, to time, to matter, movement, the fundamental forces, life, and the massive transformation that life itself has wrought on the natural world. He reveals that underlying it all is not, as we might believe, a system of immovable absolutes, but the ever-shifting, amorphous world of relativity.From religion to philosophy, humanity has traditionally sought out absolutes to explain the world around us, but as science has developed, relativity has swept away many of these certainties, leaving only a handful of unchangeable essentials such as absolute zero, nothingness, light leading to better science and a new understanding of the essence of being human.This is an Ascent of Man for the 21st century, the gripping story of modern science that will fill you with wonder and give you a new insight into our place in the universe.
How does the physics we know today - a highly professionalized enterprise, inextricably linked to government and industry - link back to its origins as a liberal art in Ancient Greece? What is the path that leads from the old philosophy of nature and its concern with humankind's place in the universe to modern massive international projects that hunt down fundamental particles and industrial laboratories that manufacture marvels?
This Very Short Introduction introduces us to Islamic astronomers and mathematicians calculating the size of the earth while their caliphs conquered much of it; to medieval scholar-theologians investigating light; to Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton, measuring, and trying to explain, the universe. We visit the "House of Wisdom" in 9th-century Baghdad; Europe's first universities; the courts of the Renaissance; the Scientific Revolution and the academies of the 18th century; and the increasingly specialized world of 20th and 21st century science. Highlighting the shifting relationship between physics, philosophy, mathematics, and technology - and the implications for humankind's self-understanding - Heilbron explores the changing place and purpose of physics in the cultures and societies that have nurtured it over the centuries.