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The God Equation: The Quest for a Theory of…

The God Equation: The Quest for a Theory of Everything (utgåvan 2021)

av Michio Kaku (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
744284,981 (4.5)2
Titel:The God Equation: The Quest for a Theory of Everything
Författare:Michio Kaku (Författare)
Info:Doubleday (2021), Edition: First Edition, 240 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek


The God Equation: The Quest for a Theory of Everything av Michio Kaku


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A very elementary account of physicists' efforts to construct what Einstein called a unified field theory and what now would be described as a tightly integrated theory of the strong nuclear, weak nuclear, electromagnetic, and gravitational interactions. Kaku still regards string theory, despite what he admits to be its major problems and incompletenesses, as the leading approach. The last chapter -- consistent, I suppose, with the book's annoying title, is half theology.
  fpagan | Jul 20, 2021 |
I elected to read this book because I previously read The Big Bang by Simon Singh some years ago and I wanted to see what progress had been made. Answer: a lot and none. The thrust now seems to be to know what was before the Big Bang. I have several reactions to this book:
It is a fun read. Whether the author intended to or not, he has produced a book that is filled with humor. Rather than describing scientists with their noses pressed against floor-to-ceiling chalkboards on three sides of a room, he has presented a work that sounds more like an adventure.
He spins a good yarn. What he tells could take volumes but he has compressed it into a very small book.
It is instructive. At times, I was totally at sea and floundering. I am not a scientist and the multitude of terms was confusing. But then, he'd rescue me and get me back on board.
It is perplexing. At the end, I am torn between two thoughts: either scientists are truly seeking THE answer, whatever that may be, or they just keep discovering things to write and publish about.

All in all, this book led me to appreciate my comfort in my belief in God. ( )
1 rösta DeaconBernie | Jun 18, 2021 |
FB kept showing me this book (I think I "liked" Kaku's page a long time ago) so when it came out, well, the ad worked enough for me to read this. Really, I would have anyway as I've read other Kaku books that I liked. Dr. Kaku did a great job here reducing incredibly complex concepts to soundbites that anyone can understand...well, I don't think a certain 75 million Americans would understand, but anyone smarter than a fifth grader would. From the ancients to Newton, to Einstein, the quantum crowds of electro- and chromodynamics, to the different string theories, Dr. Kaku points out the successes, gaps, failures and other issues with our evolutionary progress of understanding fundamental physics of the universe. I did have a few heartburns with some of his word choices (later) but overall, this is a great book as a primer for digging deeper.

Selections from some of my highlights and notes:

On the collapse of classical (Western) civilization: "Darkness spread over the Western world, and scientific inquiry was largely replaced by belief in superstition, magic, and sorcery." Sadly, we've still not recovered.

So nothingness was actually frothing with quantum activity
Physicist Jeremy Bernstein once said, “Everyone who had any substantial contact with Einstein came away with an overwhelming sense of the nobility of the man. A descriptive term for him that recurs again and again is ‘humanitarian’—a reference to the simple, lovable quality of his character.” On Planck's realization that blackbody radiation was not continuous like Newton's theory predicted:But at high frequency, the energy of light should eventually become infinite [using Maxwell's equations], which was ridiculous. To a physicist, infinity is just a sign that the equations aren’t working, that they don’t understand what is happening.For the nutjobs who think that quantum effects can have significant influence on the macro universe, or psychology, or silly biocentrism:If we let Planck’s constant gradually go to zero, then all the equations of the quantum theory reduce to the equations of Newton. (This means that the bizarre behavior of subatomic particles, which often violate common sense, gradually reduces to the familiar Newtonian laws of motion as Planck’s constant is manually set to zero.) That is why we rarely see quantum effects in daily life.Because "To our senses, the world seems very Newtonian because Planck’s constant is a very small number and only affects the universe on the subatomic level."

And this is something to file in the toolbox for the tiresome arguments about how something can't come from nothing: Hawking showed "So nothingness was actually frothing with quantum activity."

Some of my peeves:
"In 1894, Guglielmo Marconi introduced this new form of communication to the public. He showed that you could send wireless messages across the Atlantic Ocean at the speed of light." Tesla was first, but didn’t introduce his concepts to the public so the marketer won out for a long time. I thought Kaku should have noted that.

On proof of Einstein's relativistic theories, Kaku cites the corrections that have to be made for the "GPS System" to be accurate. "GPS" stands for Global Positioning System, so GPS System is redundant. And if some aren't paying attention, "The black hole is truly a monster, weighing in at a staggering five billion times the mass of the sun." Weighing? Yeas, it's a phrase, but even a pop-science author should be a little more accurate. (He also used words like "miraculously"...)

Of course he had to wax philosophical at the end in his last chapter "Finding Meaning in the Universe" He says,As the great biologist Thomas H. Huxley said in 1863, “The question of all questions for humanity, the problem which lies behind all others and is more interesting than any of them, is that of the determination of man’s place in Nature and his relation to the Cosmos.” But this still leaves open a question: What does the theory of everything have to say about meaning in the universe?Why does there always have to be meaning? And on Thomas Aquinas's Cosmological ProofFinally, if one states that the multiverse is a logical consequence of the theory of everything, then we have to ask, Where did the theory of everything come from? At this point, physics stops, and metaphysics begins. Physics says nothing about where the laws of physics themselves come from. So the cosmological proof of Saint Thomas Aquinas concerning the First Mover or First Cause is left relevant even today. I find that to be a circular argument that is meaningless. The laws are because they are. And that undermines all of physics and science by introducing nonsense.

Bottom line, as noted above, an excellent introduction. I need to look more into string theory, and I need to find Karl Schwarzchild's paper with his solution to Einstein's equations. ( )
1 rösta Razinha | May 9, 2021 |
Kaku does an excellent job of presenting the questions and answers that are leading humanity to pursue the theory of everything. He leaves the reader feeling he or she understands what is being presented. He makes the point that a tried theory of everything should be understandable to everyone.
I have to wonder if there theories represent a contemporary mythology or are opening the door to a new mythology. Time may tell. ( )
1 rösta waldhaus1 | Apr 27, 2021 |
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To my loving wife, Shizue, and my daughters,
Dr. Michelle Kaku and Alyson Kaku
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Gazing at the magnificent splendor of the night sky, surrounded by all the brilliant stars in the heavens, it is easy to be overwhelmed by its sheer, breathtaking magesty. Our concerns turn to some of the most mysterious questions of all.
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