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To the Best of Our Knowledge: The Universe | [Jim Fleming]

To the Best of Our Knowledge: The Universe

When and how did the universe begin? Why is there something rather than nothing? In this hour, we'll tackle the big questions about the universe. From Stephen Hawking's latest ideas about parallel universes and theories of everything to the quantum physics of everyday life.
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Publisher's Summary

In this hour, Stephen Hawking is shaking the universe again with his new book, The Grand Design, which says that you can explain the existence of everything without requiring God. Steve Paulson talks with Hawking's co-author, Caltech physicist Leonard Mlodinow about how they wrote the book and what it really says, and doesn't say.

Then, Charles Yu is the author of a critically acclaimed new novel, How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe. Charles Yu is one of the National Book Foundation's "5 under 35" award winners. He talks about his book with Anne Strainchamps.

Next, James Kakalios tracked down some astonishing (but true!) examples in his book, The Amazing Story of Quantum Mechanics. He told Jim Fleming that without quantum physics, we wouldn't have ipods or CD players or laptops, and that some of the early quantum physicists were inspired by science fiction.

After that, John Polkinghorne is a former quantum physicist – professor of mathematical physics at Cambridge University. He's also an ordained Anglican priest, Canon Theologian at Liverpool Cathedral in England, and author of many books on the subject of bridging the gap between science and religion.

And finally, Michio Kaku is the author of many books, most recently - "Physics of the Impossible: a Scientific Exploration Into the world of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation and Time Travel." Kaku and Jim Fleming have a grand time exploring levels of impossibility and why the impossible just takes longer. [Broadcast Date: October 14, 2011]

Listen to:

  • The Grand Design by Stephen Hawking
  • The Amazing Story of Quantum Mechanics by James Kakalios
  • How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu
  • Physics of the Impossible by Michio Kaku
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    (P) and ©2011 Wisconsin Public Radio

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