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John

Spokane, WA, United States

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 2 ratings
  • 66 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Quantum Story: A History in 40 Moments

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Jim Baggott
    • Narrated By Mike Pollock
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (150)
    Performance
    (104)
    Story
    (103)

    Utterly beautiful. Profoundly disconcerting. Quantum theory is quite simply the most successful account of the physical universe ever devised. Its concepts underpin much of the 21st-century technology that we now take for granted. But at the same time it has completely undermined our ability to make sense of the world at its most fundamental level.

    John says: "Not for the Casual Reader"
    "For Physics majors only"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story could have been told in about an hour. It is not for the layman. I thought the history was interesting, but the incessant spewing of arcane physics formulae is Greek to me. I had had enough about half way through (too much, really) and quit listening out of sheer boredom.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • How the Hippies Saved Physics: Science, Counterculture, and the Quantum Revival

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By David Kaiser
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (26)
    Story
    (27)

    In the 1970s, amid severe cutbacks in physics funding, a small group of underemployed physicists in Berkeley decided to throw off the constraints of academia and explore the wilder side of science. Dubbing themselves the “Fundamental Fysiks Group,” they pursued a freewheeling, speculative approach to physics. Some dabbled with LSD while conducting experiments. They studied quantum theory alongside Eastern mysticism and psychic mind reading, discussing the latest developments while lounging in hot tubs.

    Gary says: "Finally, I understand entanglement"
    "All physicists should take LSD & cut to the chase."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    An interesting enough story about brilliant minds, some of which were opened to inner dimensions by psychedelics, others of which were influenced by their proximity, and some which were simply a product of their time and space. Like the similarly themed "A Quantum Story", it traces the intellectual path from linear (and arbitrarily constructed) Newtonian physics and its pompous 19th century presumption to know and explain everything to the 20th century realization we don't know much about anything and probably never will. (How big is infinity anyway?) It also reveals the practical application of sciences both in its references to Cold War weapons development and, more interestingly to me, the discovery of quantum encryption which makes it possible for us to buy things and bank online reasonably safely. My only gripe is that I'm not a physicist and, as with "A Quantum Story", I could have done without the tedious blackboard formula reading. This much shorter version of the story is a better choice for the layman, and even then you had better be really interested.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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