The best history of philosophy I've read. It's key value to me is it's reflective presentation of very profound thinkers. While I sometimes bridle at "road to science" overtone, he presents a reflectively sympathetic exposition of the deeper currents running through the philosopher's whose house of "ideas" we now live in and rarely venture out of. Highly recommended.
This is an excellent history of modern astronomy, written with clarity and wit, thorough in detail and wide in scope. The reflection on cosmology toward the end is very good, though I'd highly recommend Green's Fabric of the Cosmos. It's a very good listen.
Over the past few years I've had occassion to go through a number of works dealing with the history of ideas, many of them dealing with our current ideas that undergird and make up our vision of science. This is the best I've read. His treatment of entanglements is superb. The best is his work on entropy -- a uniquely clear and comprehensive explanation.
His discussion is illuminating when discussing how one might detect alien intelligence. However, his simple materialism of mind is too naive to get a enough traction for us to gain real insight. Sometimes he seems to like to hear himself wax poetic. Ken Wilber's Marriage of Sense and Soul is much better read.
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