I enjoy physics and cosmology but have no formal training. And I have an issue with String and M-theory- but this put it into perspective to where I still don't like string theory, I will tolerate M-theory, and I understand now why so many physicists want it to work.
This is a great primer for anyone that enjoys these sorts of topics, and a good intro for those that think they might.
I have quite a phew books that deal with theoretical physics and cosmology. This one is one of the best I have. It starts a little boring at first. However, about half way through, it gets really interesting when he starts to talk about things like what the end of the universe will be like and possible ways to survive it.
Also, I wish Michio had narrated it. It would have made the book a lot more interesting.
Brief History of Time level of information, Hugo award level entertainment. Somehow Dr. Kaku manages to make the most interesting non-fiction I've ever read come to life while still providing detailed explanations. I wish I would have had all his audiobooks as a kid, I would have surely put more effort into my physics classes.
Kaku -- no. Veitor -- maybe.
I have seen Kaku on TV many times.
I should have known better than to try this book.
He articulates concepts I've always wanted to learn in such a way any layman can grasp.
I've been putting off my review for this book in an attempt to organize my thoughts so the review consisted more of the contents within the book rather than just a mindless rant of how awesome Michio Kaku is. Unfortunately, my thoughts remained a jumbled mess as my giddiness took precedence.
So why is he just so fantastic? Michio Kaku is not only gifted in his abilities as a physicists (he is co-founder of string field theory, has written textbooks, articles, novels, etc. in the field of physics and popular science), but he makes the difficult and convoluted subject of quantum mechanics and classical mechanics accessible and entertaining for the everyday person. An individual like me, who struggled through physics and calculus and who still sings the quadratic equation to the tune of "Pop Goes the Weasel" can pick this book up and enjoy it wholeheartedly.
Kaku uses easy to understand analogies to explain mathematical equations or the theory in general which helps the reader remain on board when he begins to discuss higher dimensions, the possibility of space/time travel, or multiple universes. He also engages the reader with quotes or synopsis from our culture's best science fiction novels and he lists both obscure (maybe not for the avid physic buff) and popular scientists involved in proving, disproving, theorizing, advocating (well you get the picture) the various subjects within this novel which add much to the flow and pace of this book.
Overall this book left me vibrating with excitement at the prospect of time/space travel; the possible reality of multiple universes (think Schrodinger's Cat); and the potential of humanity on earth to become a type III civilization.
Narrator: Mark Vietor
This book is straight narration without characters and different points of view and Vietor does a very good job with the narration.
Amazing read for the layman physicist. I loved the way Michio Kaku explored the possibilities that are being open to us, given that we understand our universe. I recommend this book to anyone interested in science.
It's probably not for everybody, but for people that are interested in the
newest discoveries, it's great.
This is easily the best book on modern theoretical physics for a general audience. Michio Kaku is remarkably lucid in his presentation of this material which ranges from experimentally established areas like relativity and quantum theory, to the theoretical realms of string theory and M-theory, cosmology, and the anthropic principle. The later parts of the book become highly speculative, almost science fiction in flavor. Through it all, he weaves balanced, multi-sided discussions of what it all means. A terrific, mind expanding book.
The foreword says the book is intended to be understandable without knowledge of physics, and this is mostly correct - although even WITH an understanding of the basics of relativity and quantum theory, some parts I just had to "take on trust". This is an introductory work into cosmology, not a textbook. It takes the listener through the history of our understanding of the structure of the universe, right up to the latest theories of how the Big Bang "worked", and how a Theory of Everything might unify quantum theory and relativity.
To my mind, the highly theoretical (and currently not testable) conjectures about how a parallel universe might be reachable in the very distant future was less interesting than the anecdotes about the pioneers of cosmology, and their struggle to understand the physical universe bit by bit.
To anyone not already familiar with modern cosmology, I would recommend this book highly as an introduction.